80 Turn out for Purple Prayer Walk

Published September 18, 2018

Rabbi Ari Plost speaks about a faith response to the opioid epidemic

Approximately 80 people turned out Saturday morning for the Washington Goes Purple Prayer Walk.  The purpose of the event was to unite clergy and faith community members in prayer and action around the opioid epidemic, as well as other issues that plague our city such as poverty, incarceration, and general hopelessness.

Participants began and closed the event with inter-faith worship services at University Plaza in downtown Hagerstown, including speakers from different faith traditions, Councilwoman Emily Keller, Rob Zellner speaking from the perspective of recovery, and Keisha Clopper speaking as an addictions counselor for youths.

Four groups set out in different directions of the city to walk, stopping to pray at points along the way and share stories and concerns for loved ones.  Many people carried signs declaring what they were praying for – addiction, healing, recovery, or someone specific for whom they are praying.  A fifth group stayed at University Plaza and held a non-walking prayer session.

It was a good morning of prayer and reflection.  In their closing remarks, both Rabbi Ari Plost and Rev. Rob Apgar-Taylor stressed the power of prayer, and asked the faith community to follow up our prayers with action.

Many thanks to all who organized the event, especially Michael Jones and Rev. Rob Apgar-Taylor of Veritas United Church of Christ.  The Prayer Walk was hosted by Veritas UCC in partnership with Hagerstown Area Religious Council and Interfaith Coalition of Washington County.  Youth members of Christ’s Reformed UCC prepared all the signs.

Walkers stop to pray at ADAC (Alternative Drug and Alcohol Counseling)

Rabbi Ari Plost and Kathy Powderly hold Prayer Walk signs


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