By Brian K. Riley
New Britain Independent Board President
A group of clergy, who call themselves “The Gatekeepers”, consist of Pastors and Ministers from within the New Britain Community. They were responsible for the planning and organizing, of the Prayer for Peace March, which took place on Saturday, August 13, 2016. Rev. Gervais Barger of Peace Missionary Ministries, fellow clergy and members from various churches, led the way down Main St. to downtown’s Central Park. On this very hot Saturday, the march began in front of St. Mary Roman Catholic Church. We marched down Main St. escorted by New Britain Police. As we marched, we sang hymns in unison and greeted the onlookers and invited them to join the march and some did. Honestly, I have to say, it was very liberating to participate in this march. There are a lot of people, who will talk the talk, but on this day there were many, who showed up to walk the walk.
As, we arrived at Central Park, we gathered together, and we were led through a series of prayers. Rev. McDonald led us in the prayer for Love. Rev. Brackett led us in the prayer for Peace. Rev. Lebby led us in the prayer for Stop the Violence. Rev. Barger led us in the prayer for Education. Rev. Howard led us in prayer for the City of New Britain. Minister William Strickland led us in a prayer for the New Britain Police Dept.. Sis. Carol Holley led us in prayer for the state of Connecticut. Rev. Brian Riley led us in prayer for the United States of America and Rev. Rowe led us in prayer for World Peace. There is nothing like the power in prayer, individually or collectively. Seeing multiple individuals come together, from various different backgrounds, as one body, with many parts in Unity, provided the city of New Britain with victory. Our work continues and we’re asking everyone to join in and uplift each other and our entire community in prayer.
In conclusion, the March for Peace was about the whole community coming together and letting ourselves, in body mind and spirit, be used to spread peace throughout all of New Britain, CT and beyond. This was a reminder that we must continue to fight the good fight, for love, justice, and peace for all.