Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was recently nominated for Sainthood in the Christian church by the Holy Christian Orthodox Church. The Holy Christian Orthodox Church (HCOC) is a movement of Orthodox Catholic Communion of Churches consisting of four million members worldwide.
The members of the Communion have origins in the Catholic, Evangelical and Pentecostal branches of Christianity. The HCOC, is submitting their nomination for canonization to the World Bishops Council in hopes of beginning the process.
"Dr. King was Catholic because he inspired the universal Church, he was Evangelical because of his Baptist roots, and he was Charismatic. The Roman Catholic Church cannot make him a saint because he was not a Roman Catholic, but our Church body, which has full apostolic succession can present him to the entire Christian faith to be venerated on April 4th, the date of his assassination," stated Patriarch of the Holy Christian Orthodox Church and current President of the World Bishops Council Archbishop Timothy Paul to Christian Newswire.
Other nominees by the HCOC include Rev. Oral Roberts, Bishop Charles Harrison Mason, and Rev. Richard Allen.
The Orthodox differs from the Roman Catholic Church in terms of canonization, which is followed by beautification. The Orthodox Church tradition is canonization to glorification. Glorification sees the person in sainthood get an icon.
There are nearly 600 million orthodox Christians around the world.
The official announcement was made June 27 at 5:30 p.m. in the River Cathedral of Charlotte, Charlotte, N.C.
King is an American hero was his role as a leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. Using love and non-violent tactics, he was able to spread a message of hope from African Americans as segregation tore the country apart.
He was assasinated April 4, 1968 at just the age of 39 years old.