Alcorn students attend Governor’s Prayer Luncheon, witness Myrlie Evers speak

Alcorn students attend Governor’s Prayer Luncheon, witness Myrlie Evers speak

Ten Alcorn State University students, administrators, faculty and staff participated in the Mission Mississippi 13th Annual Governor’s Prayer Luncheon held on January 31, 2013 at the Jackson Convention Complex. Alcorn’s Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence Myrlie Evers served as keynote speaker.

The event was organized by the Mission Mississippi as an opportunity for the people of Mississippi to gather and pray for our 31st Governor, the honorable Phil Bryant and elected leaders, hear an inspiring message of racial reconciliation, and strengthen unity across racial and denominational lines.
Governor Bryant welcomed the audience and in his speech emphasized how important it is for Mississippi to have its daughter, Ms. Evers, back at home.

Myrlie Evers’ powerful speech depicted her personal story of how her anger and desire for revenge after her husband Medgar Evers’ brutal assassination, with time and the help of her children and the power of prayer, transformed into the desire to work for racial reconciliation and help Mississippi become a better place.

“Now, I am proud to say that I am from Mississippi and glad to be back home,” stated Ms. Evers. She continued her speech following a round of applause and said that there are still many challenges when it comes to prejudice and racial disputes. “I just hope that we will continue to see forward movement and he {Evers} will be remembered.”

On the way back from the luncheon, the Alcorn group discussed what happened at the event, and students and employees expressed their feelings and opinions.

“The whole experience was powerful and meaningful to me,” stated Adora Alexander, a senior majoring in elementary education. “It was incredible to get together with this diverse group of people, share a prayer and commit to making our world a better place.”

Turonia Cosey, a freshman, double major in criminal justice and English, exclaimed, “I was so impressed with Ms. Evers’ personal story! I hope that one day I have her strengths and determination so I can stand up for what I believe in.”

Kenneth Bolden, a sophomore majoring in nursing, agreed with Turonia and added, “I’ve read about Medgar and Myrlie Evers and saw her on television, but it is so much more inspiring and moving to hear Ms. Evers speak and meet her in person. I am so glad that she is here with us, at Alcorn.”

Dr. Derek Greenfield, Educational Equity and Inclusion director, concluded the discussion, “We are thankful to the Mission Mississippi’s President, Rev. Neddie Winters, our Alcorn alumnus and avid supporter of the University, for providing tickets to our student group ‘Diversity Champions’. It was a tremendous opportunity for the students to attend the luncheon to show our love and support for Ms. Evers and to be partners in the movement to build healthy and inclusive communities.”

13 Evers at Governors lunch 

 Myrlie Evers (left) talking to Alcorn students before the event.