Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Venues change, sadness does not

This week, at the beginning of the latest and quite unusual Take Back the Site vigil, one of my former students who now helps organize them, said to me, "I think with this one we are finally 'caught up,' it's been a long time." It took me a second to get what she was saying--finally we have held TBTS prayer for all the victims of a homicide in Erie; there are none still to be held. Unfortunately through most of 2017 we haven't been able to keep up with them in a timely fashion--there was always one waiting to be held. But now they are all in.

This one may be the most unusual we've held in terms of venue. These photos will show you that it was held on a pier, right on the bay in downtown Erie. The woman we prayed for was killed on their family fishing boat and put into Lake Erie. The date was in June; her body appeared about 30 miles east of Erie a month later.

More photos from one of our local media groups are here. Scroll down for a short video.

It was so moving to be praying for such a reason on a beautiful, warm late summer day, next to the bay/lake that we all love. When I went into work the next day I browsed through the listing of all TBTS prayers and noticed quite a number of unusual venues, ones I never would have expected when this all started.

Sure the most common ones are outside bars or corner eating places, fights or disagreements on the street. Ditto for a few drive-bys. The ones that I couldn't have predicted and were therefore, memorable included one at a Dairy Queen, a couple in upper middle-class suburban neighborhoods, at the Sisters of St. Joseph Motherhouse that had been converted into HUD apartments, inside a high rise apartment complex, at a corner convenience store, along the fence of a neighborhood baseball field, in the green space surrounding a huge mall complex, and on the corner 1/2 block from our workplace.

Eternal rest grant unto them O God.