INGLESIDE, San Francisco — They gather once a week in the name of Black Lives Matter.
Every Thursday evening a group of neighbors led by legendary San Franciscan Rev. Glenda Hope stand at the corner of Geneva and San Jose avenues in front of Muni’s Cameron Beach Yard for a “Vigil of Justice.” They display signs that read “Black lives matter,” “White silence is White violence” and “Racism is the real pandemic” to the throngs of people going by.
“These vigils are in solidarity with Black Lives Matter,” Rev. Glenda Hope told The Light. “They started when I asked some friends, most of whom live in the Cayuga Terrace neighborhood, to make signs then come and stand for an hour along Geneva Avenue near the BART station from 5:00 – 6:00 [during] rush hour.”
“It is called a vigil because it is mostly silent with no speeches or marches,” Hope added. “Many of those who do this are older people who fear exposure to COVID-19 in larger, denser groups and/or cannot stand or march for very long. I bring a folding seat myself in case my 84-year-old legs give out.”
Hope, who ministered in the Tenderloin for 41 years before retiring in 2013, is organizing the event with seniors group Cayuga Community Connectors.
“Our people are older adults, and it is inspiring to see them make signs, stand in the chilly weather and support Black Lives Matter,” Cayuga Community Connectors Director Patti Spaniak told The Light. “Many have stood for social justice issues before, and recognize we have the power to make change.”
Together the neighbors are calling for an end to systemic racism.
“How long will we continue this?” Hope said. “There is no way to know. As Dr. King reminded us, ‘The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.’ Racism permeates every aspect of our society and there is much work to be done. The vigils will stop when they do but the work must continue.”
The next Vigil for Justice is Thursday, July 2.
Vigil of Justice
Time: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Location: Geneva and San Jose avenues
For more information, contact Cayuga Community Connectors at (646) 409-7775 or visit www.cayugaconnectors.org.
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