Martin Luther King Jr. remembered at Grace Cathedral

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- On Monday, Americans celebrate the achievements of Doctor Martin Luther King Junior. His teachings may be as poignant now as they were in the 60's.

There have been events throughout the Bay Area leading up to Martin Luther King Day and many people are using the time to reflect on the current state of their community with Mr. Trump as president. At Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, the mood was a bit somber.

"I see a lot of these things happening, the forces of change, seem to be going in the opposite direction of what King would have wanted," said Linda Parker Pennington of San Francisco.

Since the president took office nearly a year ago, Mr. Trump has railed against black athletes who protested during the national anthem, described white supremacist as "very fine people," and most recently, reportedly used a disparaging word to describe Haiti and African countries.

"I think a lot of people were optimistic about how it was working out eight years ago, nine years ago. They're not so sure anymore," said Prof. Clayborne Carson, director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute and professor of history at Stanford University.

The events at Grace Cathedral included a discussion. An esteemed panel of religious leaders tried to answer the question, "where do go from here?".

"It would not do us harm if we go back and think about King some more," said Prof. Charles H. Long, a pre-eminent scholar of African American religious history.

Those in attendance echoed that sentiment.

"His idea of a beloved community is an extraordinary idea and I pray that somehow we today can live into that idea," said the Rev. Dorsey Blake of The Church of The Fellowship of All People in San Francisco.

"It's that kernel of hope that King had, irrespective of how he felt at a given time, he kept going, he kept going," said Aaron Grizzell, executive director of the NorCal MLK Foundation.

The spirit of Dr. King will live on on Monday as thousand are expected to march throughout the Bay Area in his honor.
Copyright © 2019 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.