This year, on the 10-year anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, in an effort to make Ohio University and Athens a place where diversity is celebrated, an interfaith peace walk will take place on Sunday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m., beginning at the Church of the Good Shepherd on University Terrace and ending at the Islamic Center on Stewart Street.
"Students today have grown up with one image of religious diversity: the image of commercial jets crashing into skyscrapers," UCM Campus Minister Evan Young said in a news release. "But in the 10 years since 9/11, there's been another story gaining ground in this country a story of people from different faiths serving together, and talking together about what their traditions teach them about this shared value, and understanding each other on a deeply personal level. We want this interfaith peace walk to serve as an illustration of this other story to show people, in the flesh and on the streets of Athens, what it looks like to be better together."
The march will make the rounds of the uptown churches, starting at the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd and past First United Methodist Church, Athens First Presbyterian, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Mount Zion Baptist Church, Hillel at OU, St. Paul Catholic Church, Christ Lutheran Church, and Christ the King University Parish. It will end by encircling the Islamic Center in a symbolic gesture of welcome, inclusion and appreciation.
Sponsors of the peace walk include UCM: Center for Spiritual Growth and Social Justice, Appalachian Peace and Justice Network, OU Office of Diversity, Access and Equity, OU Office of Residential Housing, Athens Friends Meeting, Christ Lutheran Church, Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd, Hillel at Ohio University, the Muslim Student Association (MSA), and the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Athens.
The march is part of the Better Together campaign at Ohio University, which is a year-long effort to mobilize college students from different faith backgrounds to engage in community service together to make Ohio University a better place for everyone, according to the news release.
"This is a demonstration for peace," Young explained in the release, "embodying a more joyful and less fearful vision of our world and our future."
Contact UCM at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on upcoming interfaith service events, including opportunities to get involved with the Better Together campaign.