On August 12, 2022, the Charlottesville Clergy Collective, Beloved Community Cville, Congregate Cville, and the African American Pastors Council organized a walking Vigil of Remembrance and an Interfaith Service
During the walking vigil, participants walked the path that worshippers, clergy, counter-protesters, etc. walked on August 12, 2017 from First Baptist West Main, to the Jefferson School City Center, past McGuffey Park, to First United Methodist Church, to Congregation Beth Israel, and ended at Heather Heyer Way. Along the path, Apostle Sarah Kelley, Pat Edwards, Deacon Don Gathers, Wes Ballamy, Rev. Phil Woodson, Rev. Brenda Brown-Grooms, and Rabbi Tom Gutherz spoke about honoring the sacrifices of counterprotesters made, celebrating the resiliency and progress being made in our community, and challenging participants to a higher level of discomfort for the betterment of everyone else.
This vigil was our way to remember and show respect for those who were out on the streets:
to honor the activists showing up for racial justice,
to pay our respects to survivors and acknowledge their courage and the trauma they experienced,
to commit ourselves to the on-going work for racial and social justice.
At the interfaith service held at Mt. Zion First African Baptist Church, representatives from the Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Islamic, Baha'i faith led in readings and prayers, song and dance. Apostle Sarah Kelley, President of the Charlottesville Clergy Collective, exhorted those in attendance to continue to "Unite the Light" with love that casts out fear and hate.
We also collected an offering to support people who are still recovering and healing from the injuries they suffered on August 12, 2017. If you want to donate, please click here.