By Monica Juma // Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions 2016 Event
We had our kick off event yesterday, an Interfaith Peace Vigil at the National Civil Rights Museum. We had a welcome from Terry Freeman, President of the National Civil Rights Museum. Florida Jackson with the Memphis School of Servant Leadership gave a powerful keynote address on “changing our minds” to allow God to work through our imagination to envision a nonviolent Memphis. We had speakers from Black Lives Matter Memphis, Fight for 15, Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense in America, Metropolitan Interfaith Association, Pax Christi, Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim, Jain and Hindu communities about their faith group or organizations vision and works towards a Nonviolent Memphis. We had poem from 8 year old Mariana Meeks, titled “I Ain’t Afraid.” We closed with the Campaign Nonviolence Pledge and linked arms to sign “We Shall Overcome.”
Memphis is reaching a record high in the number of homicides that have happened this year. The mother of Curtis, an 18 year old who lost his life to gun violence last year, was at the vigil as part of Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense in America.
Watch video of poem by Marina Meeks here.
Watch a short video below of Jayanni Webster, organizer for Fight For $15. She talks about having grown up in Memphis and this event being the first time she’s experienced so many diverse groups coming together for a common vision.
Local Media coverage:
Photos from the event