Approximately 75 people gathered in front of Calvary Baptist Church in an interfaith demonstration of solidarity Wednesday night.
The candlelight vigil was in response to Sunday’s mass shooting in Las Vegas, in which a gunman killed 58 people and injured nearly 500.
“We gather here to repent of our apathy and to say to the community and to the world that we are awake. We gather here to say that we see and disapprove of the violence and neglect that pervades our world today,” the Rev. Corey Fields, pastor of Calvary Baptist said. “We gather here to hold a candle for lives lost. We gather here to shine a light on our culture’s glorification of violence and weapons. And we gather here to shine God’s light into a broken world. “
Through prayer, song and moments of silence, those gathered remembered the victims of the Las Vegas attack and prayed for an end to violence everywhere.
“Let us not bow to the idol of inevitability — saying this is just the way things are, there’s nothing we can do,” Fields said. “I hope you are here tonight because you know that is not true. There is a path towards peace and what God desires for God’s children. It’s just that that path is sometimes obstructed, at times intentionally so by those who have other motives.”
The Rev. Emma Horn, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Newark, told the crowd it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the sadness of the events in Las Vegas.
“But I think moments like these are calls to live, calls to remember, calls to act and calls to love those around us,” Horn said, adding, “Go out in the world. Do not be discouraged, for there is hope and love and life even in the darkest of times.”