Reimagine | Mourning Into Unity

When we see our shared humanity, we strengthen our commitment to each other and to our democracy.

Mourning Into Unity is a response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the unvoiced grief so many of us feel. On October 12th and 19th, more than 20 houses of worship gathered to mourn and unite through a peaceful, candlelight vigil.

The pandemic has laid bare cruel fissures in our society. So much loss is being endured: loss of life, loss of jobs, loss of health insurance, loss of safe schools.

When we grieve as one, we reject efforts to use the ravages of this disease and its cruel and disproportionate impacts on the most vulnerable to divide us.

View the schedule and register today.

View schedule & register

What are Mourning Into Unity vigils?

Churches, synagogues, and mosques across the country will be hosting two candlelight vigils outside their houses of worship (HOW) on two successive Mondays: October 12th and 19th.

What are our goals?

To come together as a nation to mourn our devastating losses and declare our unity as Americans and people of faith. When we see our shared humanity, we strengthen our commitment to each other and our democracy.

For more information about why we created Mourning Into Unity, click below.

"It’s easier to be mad or scared than it is to be sad. But being scared or mad will not lead to healing -- only mourning can do that."
- Rev. Brenda Kneece, South Carolina

Led by faith leaders and healthcare professionals

Faith community members can choose whether to participate from home or from cars parked at their house of worship where they can see and hear the event via Zoom. After each vigil participants can continue online in hosted chat rooms to grieve personal and shared losses experiences. All in-person events will have social distancing and mask usage.

Washington D.C. vigil

The October 19th vigil took place in BLM Plaza. Following the vigil, the Washington, DC host community, the Church of the Epiphany led by Rev. Glenna Huber processed to the White House with 460 feet of purple fabric: the sign of our unbroken humanity. Liturgical violinist Dr. Melanie Hill performed in the sacred space.


Participating safely during a pandemic

You choose how to participate in a way that is best for you and your loved ones.

In person

If you feel comfortable attending in person, you can take part in the vigil outside your house of worship, while being sure to wear a mask and maintain social distance. Don't forget to bring a candle and matches. If you would like to bring photos or mementos of someone in particular you'd like to honor, please bring those items as well.

Online

You can participate in the vigil from the comfort of your home via streaming on Zoom or Facebook Live. All Mourning Into Unity events can be found on the Reimagine website. On Zoom events, you can light your candle and share your light virtually with all others in attendance. Some events will have breakout rooms after the vigil where you can connect with fellow mourners.

From parked cars on-site

Drive to your house of worship or a nearby street where you can watch and hear the vigil via Zoom. Looking left and right, you will see other participants in their cars. Cars can be decorated with symbols of mourning, such as "fairy lights" on the interior dashboard. When the vigil lights their tapers, cars can turn on their headlights. Sites can choose whether to end the vigil with a car procession around the house of worship.

Launching a vigil in your community

View the toolkit

We’ve made it easy to come on board. Click here for a toolkit on everything you need to know about starting a Mourning Into Unity vigil in your own community.

View the orientation video

This orientation will teach you everything you need to know about how you can host an Morning Into Unity event and be part of this national movement.

Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. (Psalm 30:50)

Participating Hosts

News & Press

Florida Council of Churches

National networks of faith leaders are announcing that October will be a national “Month of Mourning,” and urge houses of worship to hold vigils to mourn, grieve and lament the loss of life and wellbeing caused by the global pandemic.

Seattle Times

We must mourn, and through our shared lament, find unity.
An op-ed by Reverend Dr. Carey Anderson of First AME Church of Seattle.

Please support Mourning Into Unity with a donation

Contribute

Meet the Organizers

Amy Sommers

Amy Sommers is a civic activist who seeks to promote inclusive democracy through involvement with groups such as P4Progress, Common Power, and other voter protection and participation initiatives. Previously, she was a lawyer engaged in international law practice, with a particular focus on China. Whether one is negotiating an international joint venture or mobilizing voters in marginalized communities, an ability to assess competing considerations and synthesize them in a cohesive manner to achieve a desired goal turns out to be a useful skill.

Mary Claude Foster

Mary Claude Foster is an emerging activist who spent 30 years circumnavigating the globe as a network television news journalist covering “both sides” of every story. She's interviewed world leaders, covered international conflicts, US presidential politics, race, and immigration. Now retired, she is enjoying finding her own voice on issues she cares about and working for inclusive democracy through groups like P4Progress and Common Power. She has a particular interest in the intersection of politics and religion.

Nancy Iannucci

Nancy Iannucci is currently a Vice President and partner with her husband at Waterstone Brands, a wholesale footwear company. She serves on various Seattle boards relating to the arts and the city parks. She is a frequent volunteer, concentrating on her interests in democracy, social justice, education, and the arts. Her favorite volunteer activity is through One America where she registers new citizens to vote at the USCIS naturalization ceremonies. She loves registering voters and encouraging people to exercise their constitutional rights.

Reimagine

The Mourning Into Unity project is supported by Reimagine, a nonprofit organization aimed at transforming our experience of dying, grieving...and living. We believe that in facing death, we begin to live more fully. Since COVID, we have been hosting virtual candlelight vigils that bring people together from across the country to honor all those we've lost. It is important at this exact moment of history for there to be a concentrated effort to create more spaces for mourning and unity.


Thank you

Logo design by Alex Britton
Amy Sommers headshot by Jeff Berryman