The Keynote for Prayer Breakfast 2013

Keynote Speaker, Rev. Marilyn Miller  Our Justice Legacy:  Never Give Up
Rev. Miller inspired all who attended with word and song.  Using many biblical and secular quotes, Rev. Miller spoke to the power each of us has to make a difference. She referenced Rosa Parks, who changed the world with just one word - “No”.  The following poem, written by Jefferson L Humphrey and Frank L. Nasca (2003) eloquently describes the power one person can have.
I am only one person. What can one person do?
Rosa Parks,
Was just one person.
She said one word.
She said it on December 1, 1955.
One person Said One word.
She said it on a bus.
She said it to the bus driver.
On the Cleveland Street Bus in Montgomery.
The bus driver said,
"Stand up, Nigger woman.
And give up your seat To that White man!"
Rosa Parks,
One person, Said one word
The word was
"No!"
One woman Said one word
And a nation
Blushed!
One woman Said one word
And a world
Talked!
One woman Said one word
And the Supreme Court
Acted!
One woman Said one word
And the buses were
Desegregated.
They put her in jail,
Because she didn’t “know her place,”
Because she didn’t “stay in her place.”
It was Thursday
When she said
That one word.
On Monday morning
The buses ran.
The Negroes walked.
Each white man had two seats. Empty seats,
Symbols of a people, Moved to walk
Moved to march,
Moved to act
By the sound of one woman’s
One word,   
“No!”
One woman Said one word
And 17,000 people marched.
I am only one person.
What can one person do?
Jefferson L. Humphrey and Frank L. Nasca
Rev. Miller reminded us that God did not give us power to play small.  Failure is not the worst thing in the world – not trying is worse.  Achieving any small part toward justice is worth the action. We cannot give up on seeing God’s justice reign in our lifetimes.
 
 
Rev. Miller challenged us to carry the torch of justice in this world – to ‘Never Give Up’. 

 

Rev. Marilyn Miller is a lifelong Milwaukeean.  Her first call and still one of her passions is teaching.  She has served for over 35 years in some capacity of education with every part of the age range.  Prior to going to seminary, she was the Executive Director of the Lutheran Human Relations Association focusing on anti-racism and cross cultural training for 10 years.  Rev. Miller became a Lutheran at the age of ten and has served in a great variety of leadership roles both locally and nationally. She feels blessed to have served on numerous boards affording her the opportunity to work with a wide range of passionate and caring people. She currently serves as Co-Pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church on the north side of Milwaukee.  Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa is where she received her formal theological education through the Theological Education for Emerging Ministries (TEEM) Program.  God, her beloved family, friends and many others have helped her to serve out her call to love people.
 
Interesting read on Rosa Parks: