Rev. Al Sharpton responds to Rev. Jesse Jackson's announcement that he has Parkinson's disease

"We pray for him, just as he fought for us.”

One of Rev. Jesse Jackson's mentees, Rev. Al Sharpton, is responding the civil rights leader's announcement that he is suffering from Parkinson's disease.

In an Instagram post, Sharpton said he recently spent time with Jackson and his family when Jackson made the announcement on Friday.

instagram

Rev. Al Sharpton responds to Rev. Jesse Jackson's announcement that he has Parkinson's disease

My statement on my mentor, Rev. Jackson, announcing that he has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. @revjjackson

A post shared by Rev. Al Sharpton (@real_sharpton) on

"I spent time with him and his family in New York as he made his announcement, and as I watched him I was reminded of the greatness of this man," Sharpton said. "How he continued Martin Luther King, Jr’s movement for justice making it national; how he perfected economic boycotts and corporate responsibility in the 21st century; how he changed American politics with his presidential runs; to how he influenced American foreign policy, Reverend Jackson has changed the nation and served in ways in which he never got credit. We pray for him, just as he fought for us.”

Jackson explained his health issues in a letter to supporters. The 76-year-old said he could no longer ignore the symptoms and thanked family, friends and supporters and asked for prayer.

"For me, a Parkinson's diagnosis is not a stop sign but rather a signal that I must make lifestyle changes and dedicate myself to physical therapy in hopes of slowing the disease’s progression," Jackson said.

Sharpton is holding a prayer service at his weekly rally on Saturday at the National Action Network's headquarters in Harlem.