Fate can be described as the development of events beyond a person's control, regarded as determined by a supernatural power or to be destined to happen, turn out or act in a particular way.

Dr. William G. Anderson knows that it was fate that allowed him to meet and become friends with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and play a major role in the Civil Rights Movement.

He offered three coincidences that lead him to be a part of making changes in his community and for us — as individuals — not to discount coincidences and fate in achieving our freedom during the Martin Luther King Jr. Unity Prayer Breakfast.

The 18th annual event, hosted by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity (Alpha Nu Lambda and Gamma Phi Chapters), was held at Tuskegee University’s Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on Monday, Jan. 16 during which  Anderson was the keynote speaker.

The circumstances in Anderson’s life —  from meeting and marrying his wife to attending Alabama State College (University) and opening his medical practice in Albany, Ga — all lead him to be who he is today and the activities that played out in his life.

Anderson and his wife. Norma Lee Dixon, moved in with her mother, who would allow young males in seminary school in Atlanta to come and practice their preaching skills at her house.

“One of the young men to come over to the house was Martin Luther King Jr.,” Anderson told the Unity Breakfast audience.  “There was no way any of us at that time would know that our lives would cross again and for the reasons that they did.”

Another of the coincidences that eventually lead to his unforeseen destiny was the friendship he developed with Ralph Abernathy, the top assistant to Dr. King.

“While attending Alabama State, I became fast friends with Ralph Abernathy,” Anderson stated. “We were so close he would eat all my food,” he jokingly said.

Once Anderson completed his degree in 1956, he went through deciding on where he wanted to set up his practice and the black community in Albany assured him that he would not lack for patients.

“It was in 1961 when in Albany that the black community moved toward racial reforms and that our lives would cross again for a bigger stage,” Anderson explained. “I called on my friends Martin Luther King and Ralph Abernathy to assist in the Albany Movement, which was successful in getting things changed in the community.”

Anderson encouraged the community not to fight fate, because one does not know where it will lead. He also wanted to let the people know that God works in mysterious ways, just like He did for him.

“There is no end to freedom,” said Anderson. “Freedom is not a destination, but a journey.”

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