Urmston"s Decades of Service to Dreams Recognized

January 4, 2013

The Church of the Resurrection in Bond Hill will present its 12th “Keeping the Dream Alive” award to Benjamin J. Urmston, S.J., professor emeritus of Peace and Justice Programs at Xavier, at its annual celebration of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Mon, Jan. 21 at 3:00 p.m. in the church at 1619 California Avenue. The event is free and open to the public.

The award is presented to someone who has kept Dr. King’s dream alive in today’s world and celebrates renews our hope for the future. Br. Hugh Henderson at 513-242-0400 has more details.

Urmston quotes King on the dreams he would like to keep alive: “A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth…A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: ‘This way of settling differences is not just.’…Equality with whites will not solve the problems of either whites or Negroes if it means equality in a world society stricken by poverty and in a universe doomed to extinction by war.”

Urmston, who turned 87 in September, has been at Xavier for more than 40 years. He has been active in community groups including Evanston Community Council, Cincinnati Archdiocesan Commission of Social Action and World Peace, the St. Francis-St. Joseph Catholic Worker House shelter for homeless men, St. Robert Bellarmine Chapel, and the Cincinnati NAACP. Urmston also was active with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and the Justice Across Campus Committee at Xavier. For 28 years, he hosted a weekly community radio show on WVXU-FM. He also taught at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and St. Xavier High School in Cincinnati. A veteran of World War II, he was in General Patton’s Third Army in Europe and participated in three major battles: the Rhine, the Ruhr and Bavaria. He also served in the Philippines.

Urmston has received numerous awards including the Dorothy Day Medal and the Orchid Award from the Tri-State Environmental Committee and for his work with the Archdiocese from Archbishops Joseph L. Bernardin and Daniel E. Pilarczyk. In 2003, he was given the Religious Leader of the Year Award for his commitment to the Contact Center, the Cincinnati Welfare Rights Coalition and the Ohio Empowerment Coalition.

The Church of the Resurrection was established on August 1, 2010 when St. Andrew in Avondale, St. Mark in Evanston, St. Agnes in Bond Hill and St. Martin de Porres in Lincoln Heights merged.

Read more about Urmston in Xavier magazine at http://xavier.edu/magazine/read-article.cfm?art_id=1341&CFID=2433042&CFTOKEN=56003583