Over 300 people gathered in the sanctuary of the Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral in Kansas City, Mo., Friday evening for a service of lament and hope for sexual abuse.
Mary Lehman Yoder in her opening remarks called on those present to hold together the tension of healing and hoping. She welcomed survivors of sexual abuse as “beloved children of God.”
The service included singing, a litany based on excerpts from Psalms 22, 26, 31, 69 and 139, and a long reading of prayers—written by Yoder—in four movements: lamenting, confessing, beseeching and hoping.
Those entering the service received ribbons or pieces of twine. Toward the end of the service, Yoder talked about a tradition of tying knots to represent troubles in our life, then untying them to represent moments of freedom. She invited people to bring their ribbons or pieces of twine to the front and leave them at the altar.
A confidential meeting was scheduled for Saturday for victims/survivors of all genders and their loved ones.
Photo by Anna Groff.