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Congressman John Lewis Recieves Medal of Freedom

2011 February 16
by sfcg

President Barack Obama presents Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., the 2010 Medal of Freedom during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Yesterday, John Lewis (a 2009 Common Ground Award recipient) received the Medal of Freedom from President Obama in a ceremony at the White House.

President Obama said this year’s Medal recipients represent “the best of who we are and who we aspire to be.”  The Medal of Freedom is the nation’s highest civilian honor, and is presented to people who have made important contributions to U.S. national security, world peace, culture or other significant public or private endeavors.

We congratulate Congressman Lewis for this well-deserved distinction, and we are honored to work with him on the launch of the Congressional Conversations on Race project, which is a joint project with the Faith and Politics Institute.

The Faith and Politics Institute and Congressman Lewis will soon lead their annual pilgrimage for Congressmen and Senators to Alabama during March 4 – 6.  SFCG staff will help to lead dialogues assist pilgrimage participants in reflecting on their experiences. SFCG has also designed a special young adult component for the pilgrimage.

Since 1998, Congressman John Lewis and The Faith & Politics Institute have led ten bipartisan, interfaith Congressional Civil Rights Pilgrimages to Alabama.  These events have afforded over 120 members of the U.S. House and Senate this unique journey through the history of the American Civil Rights Movement.

Described by many participants as one of the most valuable experiences they have had while in Congress, the pilgrimages bring people together across political, religious, and racial lines, offering opportunities for engaged and reflective dialogue on the value of the Civil Rights Movement and its meaning for us today.

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