Rev. Rick Warren Gives Inauguration Invocation Today

The Rev. Rick Warren, who

Evangelical Pastor Rick Warren delivers a speech during the 8th Annual Convention of the Muslim Public Affairs Council in Long Beach, California on Saturday Dec. 20, 2008. Under fire for opposing gay marriage, influential evangelical pastor Rick Warren said Saturday that he loves Muslims, people of other religions, Republicans and Democrats, and he also loves "gays and straights." (AP Photo/Hector Mata)

ATLANTA (AP) - The Rev. Rick Warren, who's giving today's invocation at the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama,
yesterday gave the keynote address at the Atlanta church where the
Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. was once pastor.

Warren urged the overflow crowd at Ebenezer Baptist Church to follow King's example of service and selflessness.

He said that when he prays the invocation for his friend Barack Obama, Dr. King and a whole host of witnesses will be shouting.

Warren said that Martin Luther King "was a mighty tool in the hand of God." But he said God isn't through, that justice "is a journey and we're getting further and further along."

Warren's appearance at yesterday's annual King holiday service was not without controversy. About 100 protesters gathered across the street.

The Southern Baptist pastor opposes gay marriage. And his selection by Obama to deliver today's invocation drew protests from many gay rights supporters.

But Isaac Newton Farris, president of The King Center, says that Warren shared much of King's vision and that it was good that he
came by Ebenezer before heading off to the inauguration.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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