Seen at some point on a PBS station in your town during the month of February: Sisters of Selma:
The year was 1965; the place, Selma, Alabama. For decades, local laws had all but prevented Blacks from voting. And those who did venture to protest often faced harassment--even death. Black Selmians, supported by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., decided to march to the state capital of Montgomery to draw attention to their plight. On a Sunday in early spring, dozens of peaceful protesters on their way out of the city were brutally beaten back by state troopers and the sheriff's posse on horseback. The violence of "Bloody Sunday" stunned Americans, focusing nationwide attention on civil rights.
A group of American nuns from St. Louis were among the first to protest the violence. At a time when many church leaders were reluctant to address the treatment of Blacks in the South, these courageous women defied authority--and a long history of simply praying for causes--to take their message to the streets of Selma. The Missouri sisters were welcomed by the Black residents. This was due in large part to the decades of bridge-building by sisters from Rochester, New York who had met the education and health care needs of the poor Blacks of Selma. The Archbishop of Mobile-Birmingham had prohibited them from joining the marches, so they fed, housed, and cared for waves of civil rights activists from elsewhere.