I've often written about forces in our culture that create and perpetuate child abuse, and I'll continue to do so. But one of my personal blogging goals for the new year is to highlight projects and events around the country that contribute to creating the kind of social change that both protects children from abuse, and promotes the healing of those who suffer from the wounds of abuse. Today I'm eager to share with you two events that have come across my desk in the last 24 hours.
The first is a memo that Holy Innocents Episcopal Church in Atlanta, Georgia has scheduled a Requiem Mass for Sunday, January 22 @ 4PM to honor the children who lost their lives to abuse and violence in the state of Georgia during 2011. At sundown on Saturday, January 21, the congregation of Holy Innocents will hold a prayer vigil. During the night, volunteers will read the names of the 550 children who died. The vigil will end at 7AM the next morning and Mass will begin at 4PM that afternoon. The intention of the people of Holy Innocents is to hold these prayer services annually, to remind us of the innocent children, celebrate their lives, and proclaim the love and reconciling grace of God. What a beautiful way for a community to raise awareness, give expression to their compassion, and offer faith, hope and healing! What about your place of worship? Could you invite the members of your congregation to do something similar? If so, tell us about it.