Tag Archives: #MLKDay

MLK Day Meal Serve

BE. Orlando was joined by volunteers from the All For Good Network today for a special MLK service project.  Volunteers invested their morning to sponsor, prepare, and serve a healthy lunch buffet at the new Ronald McDonald House located at Nemours Children’s Hospital in Lake Nona.


This was a super-creative team! They were challenged with taking the provided food items (in a heap on the counter) and using their imaginations to turn them into a beautiful food buffet that would make people smile.  Residents were greeted by fun food art like  veggie happy faces, a cheese snowman, and a tomato heart. And there was so much more:  fragrant sauteed mushrooms; whole grains & rice medley; deviled eggs; salad & veggie bar; mac & cheese; sandwich meat, cheese, & toppings bar; pnut butter & jelly mini sandwiches; brie & crackers; and more.  Desserts included lady fingers, fresh berries, yogurt & berry phyllo cups, vegan oatmeal cookies, and biscotti.

Ronald McDonald House

For more than 20 years, Ronald McDonald Houses have been making it possible for families to remain closely connected to their children who are in treatment for serious illness.  At a time when families need to be together most, they are provided with a supportive home-away-from-home.  These houses (that love built) have served more than 23,000 families – at no charge to them.  They rely on the community not only for financial contributions, but to provide in-kind donations and volunteer service as well. One of the volunteer opportunities is to participate in “Share a Meal”: providing loving, healthy meals as part of a nurturing, healing environment.  It is a great way to say “we care about you.”

We are grateful and honored for the opportunity to come together on this national day of service and stand shoulder-to-shoulder working to prepare a lunch for the residents of the Ronald McDonald House. Thank you, volunteers, for making a difference!

Martin Luther King, Jr. – National Day of Service

Please visit our MLK article for a Humanist perspective on A Day On, Not A Day Off.

From RMH Charities of Central Florida:



A day on, not a day off.

January 13, 20171

Monday is a national day of service – this weekend, seek out ways to make a difference in your communities.

On the third Monday in January, individuals across the nation rise together in service to our communities to honor civil rights activist and unity visionary, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Now more than ever, we stand shoulder-to-shoulder to support the vision of a united, inclusive, multiracial, diverse nation.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Our organization has been criticized in the past for our celebration of this holiday by Humanists who disesteem King’s message because of his faith, which was an integral part of his identity. But divisiveness was not.

King came from perspective of Christianity and promoted ecumenical unity, an inherently divisive concept marginalizing non-christians.  However, if he were here today, in an openly perspective-diverse nation, wouldn’t he see beyond the barriers of his faith? King looked on the world through a lens of inclusion; rather than ecumenical unity, couldn’t he evolve to focus on human unity?  Some people are pent by their faith or non-faith and are not courageous or compassionate enough to truly value those of different perspectives.  Would King have been?  Are we?

“In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

 King was a vehement advocate of equity for all races; would his vision have been mature enough to see the evidence of inequities, discrimination, bullying, and other unacceptable transgressions against people of non-faith and minority faiths?

How can we, in our small spheres of influence, both honor his work to overcome the sadly still-relevant racism in America and further celebrate and promote a message of inclusion for all?

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

King made a famous, uneducated response to a youth who asked him for advice about his feelings of attraction to other boys (Ebony Magazine advice column, 1958).  The  response was misinformed, but it was not judgmental.  While it may lead some to believe he was blind to diversities beyond colour, he did not have the culturally facilitated opportunities for enlightenment that we are privileged to have today. That statement was made 11 years before the Stonewall riots that began the journey toward equality and brought the LGBTQ+ community into the national diversity conversation. Dr. King was tragically assassinated the year before Stonewall.

Subsequent to the riots, his wife, Coretta Scott King, joined the efforts to stand for LGBT equality, as she felt that her husband would have done the same. Mrs. King said: “I’m proud to stand with all of you, as your sister, in a great new American coalition for freedom and human rights.”

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

 Those  who value and speak for equality only for the demographics of which they are a member are brave self-advocates whose voices make a difference, but they are not true inclusion champions. When equality is one of our core personal values, we join the conversation to promote inclusion for other marginalized demographics when we learn about, and have compassion for, their challenges. We become an ally.

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Uniting people through service

One of King’s core values was service, and he lived his life in service to others.  On the third Monday in January we strengthen our communities by joining with others – of all diversities, of all faiths and non-faith perspectives – to make a difference.  We make the world a better place through service; we are empowered to overcome challenges through service; we are connected to one another through service.

As Humanists, we value action-oriented, solution-focused answers to the needs in our communities.  Tomorrow, on MLK day, honor your lifestance of Humanism by putting your values into action and engaging in service.


From the Corporation for National and Community Service:

After a long struggle, legislation was signed in 1983 creating a federal holiday marking the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1994, Congress designated the Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday as a national day of service and charged the Corporation for National and Community Service with leading this effort. Taking place each year on the third Monday in January, the MLK Day of Service is the only federal holiday observed as a national day of service – a “day on, not a day off.” The MLK Day of Service is a part of United We Serve, the President’s national call to service initiative. It calls for Americans from all walks of life to work together to provide solutions to our most pressing national problems. The MLK Day of Service empowers individuals, strengthens communities, bridges barriers, creates solutions to social problems, and moves us closer to Dr. King’s vision of a “Beloved Community.”


Local Events & Info:


2016 MLK Weekend of Service Events

1/13/17 – Click Here for 2017 article

1/15/16 Update: 2016 follow-up


Original Announcement:

2016 MLK Weekend of Service (#MLKDay)

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the nation continues his legacy of service to others.  Each year, BE. participates in service initiatives to celebrate service and diversity.

logoThroughout the MLK weekend BE. Orlando volunteers will engage in various service projects, including refurbishing a playground at a domestic violence shelter, feeding families of children receiving treatment for long-term and terminal illnesses, and hosting a Secular Sunday Supper conversation as part of the Sunday Supper America movement. Our Sunday Supper conversation topic is Service and Diversity: Civic engagement of the secular and Humanist community and how service can increase acceptance and inclusion of Secular Americans.

We welcome community members to join us.

…read more

#MLKDay Weekend of Service

Visit the 2016 MLK Weekend of Service.

January 19, 2015: Make it a Day On, Not A Day Off. 

Are you volunteering this weekend?  Below are some resources to help you engage your families, friends, colleagues, teams, faith/non-faith communities, and other networks in volunteerism this weekend.

Needs Drive for the Coalition for the Homeless – The central Florida Coalition is in need of men’s flip flops and other items.  They also have an immediate needs list posted with other items.  Consider hosting a drive this weekend in your neighborhoods or other groups.  Delivery information is on the list, or you can contact BEOrlando@live.com and we will arrange pickup and delivery on Monday for you.

Sunday Suppers  –  Consider hosting a secular Sunday Supper. Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s vision of people of diverse backgrounds interacting on personal levels, America’s Sunday Supper encourages people to share a meal and discuss issues that affect their communities, to increase racial and cultural understanding and, to promote unity.  You can find toolkits and ideas at the Points Of Light Foundation and register your Sunday Supper HERE.

#MeetupMonday – Similar to the Sunday Supper initiative, #MeetupMonday gives you a chance to discuss what’s happening—in our neighborhoods and all across the US—so we can come together and build a stronger community.  Invite neighbors or coworkers you want to know better, friends, and anyone who wants to bring their own perspective to the conversation.  Visit http://www.meetup.com/Orlando-FL-MeetupMonday/ to learn more.

Here are some things going on around central Florida: