Peace vigil goes strong since 2003by Serena Townsend, intern for The Mennonite
In front of the courthouse in downtown Goshen, Ind., 14 people come together around an outstretched banner. They all bear somber faces, as if mourning a loved one. Just like every other Wednesday noon since 2003, these people gather Feb. 15 for a peace vigil.
“Mourn the dead,” their banner reads, stating the number of soldiers killed in the Middle East conflicts—6,379—and that there are “millions of victims.” Two people take turns reading names of those who have died, and when and how, into a microphone.
Mose Beachey from Goshen holds a sign. Photo by Serena Townsend.
“I think if more people knew about it they’d at least join in the spirit of it,” says Evelyn Kreider, of College Mennonite Church, Goshen. She says the 12 to 14 people who show up every week come from various denominations and congregations around Goshen, “which I think strengthens it.”
A person in a white mini van turns right onto Main Street, giving a thumbs up and a long honk as they drive past. Other drivers stopped at the intersection stare curiously; some honk as the white van did.
Vigil participants gather on Feb. 15 in front of the courthouse in Goshen, Ind. Photo by Serena Townsend.
After about 10 minutes of listing names, the group observes a moment of silence. They end with a reading of Psalm 46, and the banner is rolled up. They’ll keep meeting until the war ends, and then they’ll "dance in the street," as one participant said.
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