Friday marks one year since the murders of nine people during a prayer meeting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston.
At 6:30 Thursday at Mt. Tabor Lutheran Church at 1000 B Ave. in West Columbia, the South Carolina Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America invites all to gather to commemorate the martyrdom of nine saints of God.
The Rev. Eric Wolf, assistant to the Bishop for the South Carolina Synod, said “There are moments in life and culture that we look back on and realize that they were a turning point. Last year on June 17, we experienced such a turning point in the South Carolina Synod of the ELCA when an estranged member of one of our congregations murdered nine people at Mother Emanuel AME in Charleston.”
Wolf continued, “in the wake of this unspeakable tragedy, we recognized that though many of us in the South Carolina Synod have been actively striving against racism and toward racial reconciliation for years, it was time for us to stand together and say “No More”, taking a more public and more intentional stand against a culture permissive of racist ideologies and that nurtures a deep reverence for violence.”
In the wake of the second racially and sexually motivated mass murder in less than a year, this time fifty LGBTQ people Pulse in Orlando on their LatinX night, we realize together that this service of reconciliation and commemoration is even more crucial than we could have imagined, as we’ve seen an actual increase in publicly accepted and endorsed hate speech toward those in minority demographics whether it’s race, gender identity, sexual orientation, or fiscal stability.”
Friday, the South Carolina State Museum will offer the public an opportunity to reflect on the lives of the nine who died. Museum guests can write notes about their memories from this day, as well as reflect and share thoughts on recent tragic events. This event is free with general admission. Visit scmuseum.org to learn more.