Thursday, February 17, 2011

WHILE THE WORLD WATCHED (A Birmingham Bombing Survivor Comes of Age During the Civil Right Movement) by CAROLYN MAULL McKINSTRY with DENISE GEORGE

Have you ever read a book and when you turned the last page you were left speechless? This is a book for all to read. On September 15, 1963 Carolyn Maull McKinstry's life changed forever. Just as she leaves the bathroom of her church a bomb goes off killing four of her friends. This is Carolyn's account of what happened that day. Carolyn was coming of age during the riots and hatred that seemed to take over our nation. The KKK was alive and active destroying the lives of many.

In this beautifully written story, Carolyn tells of what life was like during that time and into present day. It is sad that such a horrific day must forever be imprinted in one's mind. Poignantly, Carolyn brings these years to life for women like me who were never touched by such evil. I was born in 1966 and my life was far from the anguish that Carolyn experienced. Carolyn talks about the march with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and brings us through the assassinations of the Kennedy's. She shares all the evils that occurred during this time in history. These were times that evil attacked and left a mark forever.

Carolyn shares the forgiveness she has in her heart and the strength the Lord has given her to overcome. As she tells the story of the past it is like you too are present with her. She shares with such passion. God has used Carolyn in many ways. While the world watched she lived it. While the world judged she forgave. While the world turned away she was ever present with her family and friends. Carolyn's church was a huge part of her life and her faith has carried her through many dark times and has been there to encourage her as she is the voice of the past for those of us who were not present.

I admire Carolyn. She is one of those women I would be honored to have lunch with. To sit and just share. Her story comes to life through these pages and within these pages we get a glimpse of who her friends were. Their lives are not forgotten, but remembered by the love of a friend who lives to tell the story.

This book was a gift from Tyndale for it's review.

Carolyn McKinstry:
Carolyn Maull McKinstry is a survivor of the Civil Rights struggle and an eyewitness to the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing. As a teenager, she marched under Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and bravely faced Bull Connor's German shepherds and stinging fire hoses during the battle for equal rights in her hometown of Birmingham, Alabama.
Now, nearly fifty years after the bombing, Carolyn is still an active member of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, serves as president of the Sixteenth Street Foundation, and works full time spreading her message of racial reconciliation.

A highly sought-after speaker, she has appeared on Oprah, 20/20, CNN, and MSNBC, and portions of her story have been featured in Life magazine and USA Today. She has made numerous television and documentary appearances, including Spike Lee's documentary Four Little Girls; Soledad O'Brien's Black in America; Brian Williams's Shades of Progress, Shadows of Hate; and Family Network's We Shall Not Be Moved.

Carolyn has addressed audiences in New Delhi, Mumbai, Barcelona, and the Italian Baptist Evangelical Union in Rome, as well as the Rosa Parks Museum, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., and numerous colleges and universities.

She recently received her master of divinity from Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama, where she currently lives with her husband, Jerome.

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