Jonathan Rieder, author of the new book “Gospel of Freedom: Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Letter From Birmingham Jail and the Struggle That Changed a Nation,” said many reporters initially ignored the letter. Photo courtesy Bloomsbury Press

Fifty years later, church leaders respond to King’s “Birmingham Jail” letter

(RNS) Fifty years after the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. challenged white church leaders to confront racism, an ecumenical network has responded to his “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” Christian Churches Together in the USA has produced a 20-page document that answers King and includes confessions of church bodies about their silence and slow pace in addressing racial injustice.