This year marks what would have been Martin Luther King Jr.’s 90th birthday. A number of faith-based events will be observed around our county. Here are two of them:

Galveston’s St. Vincent’s House will host its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Unity Prayer Circle from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Jan. 21 in their courtyard at 2817 Alfreda Houston Place. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held indoors, downstairs.

Bonnie Farmer, president of St. Vincent’s board, said of the event, “The desire to celebrate and encourage diversity in our community is our basis for the prayer circle. Our invitation to all to attend and join hands is sincere. There will be a short program with guest speakers on this year’s theme: Strengthening our Community. Following, participants join hands for prayer. One may offer a short prayer aloud or simply be present as others voice their hopes and commitments for a Galveston known to unite under many flags, many languages, many races and religions.”

Light refreshments will be provided and served by the Ivy Isles Foundation of Alpha Kappa Alpha.

The celebration echoes King’s own comments, Farmer said.

“People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they have not communicated with each other,” she noted King as stating.

For details, call 409-763-8521.

The La Marque Alumni Association will have its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Parade at 10 a.m. on Jan. 21. The parade will begin at La Marque High School at 300 Vauthier Road, turn right on FM 1765, make a left on Bell Drive, and then end at Greater Bell Zion Baptist Church. The program celebration will be immediately afterward at the church.

“This annual gathering reflects Dr. King’s commitment to community as a reflection of our shared humanity,” said Nakisha Paul, parade chair. “As he himself said, ‘An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.’”

For details, call 409-766-0049 or 409-526-6463.

Spoken 4, a Gospel Quartet from Branson, Missouri, will be ministering at the La Marque’s First Christian Church at 6 p.m. on Saturday and at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday at 1204 Ross Ave.

“Last January, Spoken 4 was with us after the unusual cold spell that we had,” said Rex Teter, pastor of First. “They warmed up the crowd in a magnificent way with their great music, warmth and testimonies about Jesus. We’re inviting the community to be blessed with a variety of gospel music by these excellent musicians who are authentic in their presentation and their lives.”

A love offering will be received.

For details, call 409-935-2554 or email

Update: There’s a minor movement, both among the faithful and the secular, to adopt a minimalist lifestyle. In a rare dissent, contributor Caryn Rivadeneira, wrote, “In defense of clutter — What to do about privilege, poverty and piles of stuff,” for Christianity Today’s website.

If you’d like to share your take on the spirituality of decluttering by email, we’re interested.

Events for Faith Focus should be submitted at least two weeks in advance. Rick Cousins can be reached at

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