On Thursday, December 20 and Friday, December 21, 2018, PFFC held its sixth annual vigil to remember people who died without a home in Washington DC during 2018.
The Vigil began at 5 pm with a service at Luther Place Church with over 100 in attendance. Speakers included: Karen Brau, Pastor of Luther Place Church, Reverend Laura Cunningham, Pastor of Western Presbyterian Church, Dr. Catherine Crossland, Homes Outreach Director of Unity Health Services, Dr Laura Zeilinger, Director of the DC Department of Human Services. Sixth grade students from the National Presbyterian Church..
Following the service participants carried out a police-escorted candlelight march down 13th St. to a large tent erected at Freedom Plaza. Following dinner there was an open-mike. Gift cards from Walmart were passed out to individuals experiencing homelessness. Following an “overnight challenge” (spending the night in sleeping bags in the tent) and breakfast on Friday, December 21 participants did a walk-around to the offices DC Council Members where they presented a series of asks. Following the walk-around participants regrouped in front of the tent at Freedom Plaza for a march, with an empty casket symbolizing those who died without a home, up 14th St to the New York Ave. Presbyterian Church where participants were given lunch.
At the memorial service, hosted by PFFC, there were speakers representing the Christian, Jewish, and Muslim faiths. The names of 54 people who died in 2018 without a home were read and 83 people recently housed who also passed away in 2018.
Media coverage was provided by Street Sense.