In 1983, a bill was signed creating a federal holiday marking the birth of King and the holiday is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is close to the birthday of King, Jan. 15.
President Bill Clinton signed federal legislation on Aug. 23, 1994, making Martin Luther King Jr. Day a national day of service.
King was a symbol for peace, nonviolence, empowerment and brotherly love.
According to Pace Mayor Levon Jackson, he stands firm on the message of King and he believes that it is vital to his community.
"I definitely feel that I have been aiding and promoting the message of peace and brotherhood in my community," said Jackson.
"When I ran for mayor in June of 2013, I talked with the citizens — male, female, young, old, whites, blacks, democrats and republicans. I asked them to allow me to be a community mayor and since that day, I have been doing everything and anything to be just that," he added.
History shows King used the power of words and acts of nonviolent resistance, such as protests, grassroots organizing, and civil disobedience to achieve seemingly impossible goals.
He led campaigns against poverty and international conflict, always maintaining fidelity to his principles that men and women everywhere, regardless of color or creed, are equal members of the human family.
"It is very important to implement and carry out the message of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. We must walk together and work together — that is God's ultimate goal," Jackson said.
"I have been making efforts to bridge the gap by bringing everyone together. I am still on the mission to bring everyone closer together — this mission is better for everybody. I just love to see people keeping the message of Dr. King alive because it can only happen through us," he continued.
"His message was not strictly intended for blacks. His message was for all races,” said Mound Bayou Mayor Darryl Johnson. “I believe that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a prophet that was sent to America to help aid the future of African Americans. His ‘I Have A Dream’ speech coupled with his speech that was given in Memphis was very prophetic.
"He spoke words that offered direction to African Americans in their quest and work in the United States," he added.
According to Johnson, King assisted in turning the page in African American history that caused men and women to lift their heads up and continue to strive for excellence in the United States.
"Martin Luther King gave us a prophetic word and he told us that he may not get there with us but his eyes had seen the glory of the coming of the Lord which I believe is inclusive in what we are doing as African Americans today," Johnson said in a tone of assurance.
Johnson said that our nation should look back on the words spoken by King and revisit the dream outlined to promote united communities.
"I think that the great citizens of Mississippi need to examine themselves strongly."
We must revisit the dream and check ourselves as a reflection to see if we are doing what Dr. King outlined. We should visit the mirror and the reflection of those words based on the word of God that he spoke by," he added.
"If we take the time to examine ourselves politically and spiritually and see if we are hitting the mark and if we find that we are not closely aligning our lives based on the message of Dr. King then we need to change," Johnson continued.