The University of Virginia held a moving vigil Wednesday night to combat sexual orientation bullying and honor those who committed suicide. Several Episcopal clergy and some other ministers joined several hundred students, faculty, staff and members of the community.
The Rev. Jim Richardson has written up his thoughts on the evening (he was the “leader’ of the clergy who spoke) at his blog, “Fiat Lux.” There were students from UVA, as well as local High Schools (including students from Charlottesville High School and St. Anne’s Belfield School) who spoke, and read the stories of the young people who took their lives…quite a moving evening.
“Last night, I stood with friends and a few hundred people in the autumn chill with candles next to the statute of Thomas Jefferson on the steps of the Rotunda at the University of Virginia. We stood at a place built as a monument to all forms of freedom, including freedom from fear and hatred.
We were in the right place last night.
We listened to heart-wrenching stories of so many young people who recently took their own lives because they were bullied for being gay or thought to be gay. One after another, UVA students came to the microphone and told stories that cry out to be heard:
The story of Tyler Clementi, who jumped off the George Washington Bridge after his roomate secretly videoed him having relations with a man. He was 19 years old.
The story of Billy Lucas, who was bullied on Facebook. He was 15 years old . . . .”
UVA has video of the event here.
Local news coverage here.
H/T to Peter Carey, who was at the event as well.