Garth, pastor of Westside Baptist Church in Chattanooga, describes King’s role in the National Sunday School and Baptist Training Union’s fall institute.
Dear Rev. King,
This comes as a method of informing you of the outlay of our Fall Institute. As you already know our fall institute will begin November 7, 1955 at 7:00 p.m. The first class period will run from 7:00–7:40; from 7:40–7 45 will be a short recess. The second class period will begin at 7:45 and end at 8:25. At this point there will be a very short devotion and you will be introduced to give your message. Then we will have our announcements and benediction after you have spoken. You will have from 25 to 30 minutes, more or less.
We are not using a theme this time only a Motto: “Teach—Reach—Win.” So you are at liberty to use your own discretion to your theme or topic. However you may point out to us the need of prepared leaders in the Christian Church. Then too, you may touch upon some or any of these courses we are teaching.
You will not worry about teaching any course. However you may find something to add to them in your message. They are as follow:
A Survey of the Old Testament
Rev. H. H. Battle, Morehouse man
Christian Doctrines, Rev. W. J. Thomas
another Morehouse graduate
Administering the Sunday School
Rev. W. A. Dennis, a product of Drew
Stewardship—Rev. C. L. Robinson
Church Leaders and Their Responsibilities
Rev. E. L. Hicks
Preparation for Marriage
Mrs. J. C. Bonner
Church Music, Mrs. C. L. Robinson
Ushers and First Aid
Mrs. B. Johnson
Administering the Baptist Training Union—T. D. Lewis
All of the above ministers are local pastors.
I had hoped to contact you Thurs night but there was a misunderstanding on the part of the operator. I wanted to see if you had any question that you would would like for us to answer for you.
You will have the opportunity of meeting many people from Alabama and Georgia. We are praying for you, and we hope that your week in Chattanooga will be a blessing.
The school will close on Friday evening.
[signed] Rev. N. Garth, Jr.
MLKP-MBU, Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers, 1954-1968, Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center, Boston University, Boston, Mass.