There were barely any empty seats inside St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on March 7 for a multicultural “Plea for Healing” service.
The service began with African drums played by Baba Tony Artis, while the services’ performers walked to their seats. Rev. John Denson, rector of St. Paul’s, welcomed the diverse audience and internationally acclaimed opera singer, Angela Brown, to the service.
“We have a diverse gathering tonight,” Denson said. “And we are common in our brokenness. But our brokenness is the source of our humanity. And as we come together tonight, it informs our community.”
Brown graced the audience with her first selection of “The Lord’s Prayer.” The soprano singer captivated the crowd with her high notes and emotional delivery.
“I felt the audience was on the edge of their seats,” Brown later said. “The emotion was palpable.”
Other spiritual leaders led prayers throughout the night for the community, children, inclusion, the nation and peace.
Throughout the service there were diverse performances showcasing different cultures and walks of life, one of those being the final performance titled, “Black Lives Kyrie.”
The performance was a combination of singing, dancing, instruments and poetry. A few of the performers for the piece included Brown, Paulo Castro, Jillian Harrison-Jones, Tiffany Gilliam, Dalton Woody, Will Upham, Katherine Kincaid, Victoria Korovljev and Tasha Jones.
The service ended with the congregation singing, “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” and with departing words from Carolyn Scanlon-Holmes, pastor from The Garden Church, who told everyone that their prayers were heard during the service.
“It’s a much-needed plea all over the world, for all humanity,” Patricia Houston of Indianapolis said after the service.
Contact staff writer Timoria Cuningham at 317-762-7854 or email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @_timoriac.
Michael Dabney contributed to the reporting of this story.
This story has been updated to accurately reflect the name of a performer in the article.