King Holiday Celebration Planned for Jan. 15 at College

December 27, 2023
The guest speaker at 2023 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Day was The Rev. Willie Bodrick, senior pastor of the historic Twelfth Baptist Church in Roxbury. Staff photo/Wayne Braverman

METCO’s first half-century in Bedford will be the theme of the eighth annual community Martin Luther King Jr. Day commemoration.

The free event, sponsored by Bedford Embraces Diversity, is scheduled for the morning of the holiday – Monday, Jan. 15 – at the Middlesex Community College Student Center. Doors open at 10 a.m., with the program beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Reservations are requested, by writing [email protected]. Many leaders of the town’s educational, governmental, military, and commercial institutions are planning to attend. Coffee, pastries, and other refreshments are on the menu.

METCO is the state-funded program in which inner-city minority students attend suburban schools, improving their educational experiences, and simultaneously diversifying the student population.

Bedford began enrolling METCO students in September 1974, and several are expected to participate in The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day event.

Keynote speaker and vocalist will be The Rev. Clarence Powell, who began at Page School as a first grader in the fall of 1977 and graduated from Bedford High School in 1989.

Powell, a Ph.D. candidate at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, is the founder and pastor of Abundant Life Deliverance Temple in Dorchester. He also will be the vocalist for the Bedford event, accompanied by backup singers and his son playing keyboards.

The commemoration also will feature a panel discussion of Bedford METCO alumni reflecting on their experiences, moderated by Akil Mondesir, METCO director for the Bedford schools and a 1998 BHS graduate.

Board members of Bedford Embraces Diversity also will ceremonially reflect on current equity and inclusion achievements and challenges, locally and nationally.   

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