Troost churches plan Good Friday peace vigil Friday

Churches and residents along Troost plan a candlelight peace vigil tomorrow after Good Friday services.

“The space between Good Friday and Easter is a sacred time for Christians. We have confronted brutal violence and death, and we cast ourselves into the certain hope of resurrection. I believe that we find ourselves in a similar ‘threshold time’ on Troost these days. There has been violence and death here. But now we know life. Our lighted candles are symbols of that life–a promise we are seeing fulfilled all along Troost.” Donna Simon, pastor of St. Mark Hope and Peace

People plan to line the Troost Avenue on Good Friday evening to call attention to violence and to celebrate positive momentum in the area.

According to a press release from the St. Mark Hope and Peace Lutheran Church:

As they did two years ago, worshipers at St. James Catholic Church, 3909 Harrison and St. Mark Hope and Peace Lutheran Church, 3800 Troost, will file out of their services on Good Friday to line the street, “staking a claim for peace on Troost.” They’ve invitsed residents fo Troost neighborhoods to join them. Those who wish to join them should make a sign and take a candle to the vigil, which is scheduled for 8:15 to 9 p.m.

The Good Friday vigils began in 2011, in response to the shootings of three young men at the KCATA Metro Center at 39th and Troost the previous week.

“That first vigil was an opportunity to say ‘no’ to the violence we had witnessed right outside our churches, to claim our neighborhood as a place of peace,” says Donna Simon, pastor of St. Mark Hope and Peace, said. “For too long, this kind of violence has been expected along the Troost Corridor. We say ‘no.’ This is a time of renewal along the Corridor. Our neighborhoods, our churches, and our community organizations are united in declaring that it is a new day on Troost. This is a great place to live and a great place to work. I happen to do both here, and I wouldn’t be anywhere else.”

Deacon Ross Beaudoin, Pastoral Administrator at St. James, believes that the vigil has a universal appeal.

“I believe it is important to hold a vigil of witness for non-violence on the Troost Corridor because so many of our lives are touched by gun violence, and also by personal violence of many kinds, including domestic violence and economic violence,” says Beaudoin. “It is not just the Troost Corridor that suffers from violence, but this particular action in witness for non-violence is symbolic of the need for all residents to examine their lives, live non-violently and to stand up against violence with personal and prayerful resolve.”

Holding a peace vigil after Good Friday services makes perfect sense to Simon.


Comments are closed.