It Happened On Main Street

And making a whip out of some chord, He drove them all out of the Temple, cattle and sheep as well...

John 2:15
Exodus 20:1-17; Psalms 19:8-11; I Corinthians 1:22-25; John 2:13-25

Sermon Week/Year

Third Sunday of Lent, B

It happened on Main Street — downtown, Rock Hill, South Carolina. The year was 1961. Sadly, in the big scheme of things, only a blip in time has since past. That year, on the morning of January 31st, a group of students from the all-black Friendship Junior College sat down to eat at the whites-only lunch counter in the McCrory’s five and dime store.

Today, for those too young to remember, it may be hard to imagine. The segregation laws and customs that separated whites and blacks at that time — in schools, restaurants and other public places — resulted in the arrest of those young men. And then the nine Friendship students were given the choice of paying a $100 fine or spending 30 days in jail at hard labor. Up to that point in the civil rights movement, protesters had paid their fines and gone home after being convicted. But nine of the men arrested in Rock Hill that day chose instead…

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