Since September 2008, over 300 children (18 and under) and over 600 youth (under age 26) have been killed by violence. In response to this crisis and to prevent future violence, we are suspending Urban Dolorosa to focus our energies on two new partnerships. Please Join Us!
It is the mission of Chicago’s Citizens for Change (CCC) to strengthen communities and reduce youth violence through outreach to the surviving family members and loved ones of homicide victims. CCC will facilitate the resiliency of families and youth through trained crisis teams, a telephone hotline, a web-based guide to Chicago-area services, and peer support opportunities for parents and youth siblings to become involved in restorative peace-making and anti-violence work. Stay tuned for ways to contribute and volunteer.
CROSSwalk began as an ecumenical pilgrimage for peace – a march during Holy Week from St. James Cathedral, to Daley Plaza, to Old St Patrick’s Church, and concluding at Stroger Cook County Hospital. CROSSwalk is committed to organize churches and volunteers to raise awareness about youth violence, to support community-based peace-making efforts, and to advocate for change until all children are safe.
Urban Dolorosa means “The Sorrowing City.” We seek to raise awareness about the epidemic of youth violence in our city and to recruit religious leaders and pastoral care volunteers to minister to families and youth traumatized by violence.
During the first week of November 2011 – in coordination with All Saints, All Souls, and Day of the Dead – Urban Dolorosa organized five multicultural and multimedia memorial concerts in five different neighborhoods. Over 2000 people attended to remember children killed in violence, to support grieving families and traumatized communities, and to commit together to end this violence.
Check out the following media stories:
Urban Dolorosa featured on Different Drummers
NBC5 – Mayor Emanuel at St. Sabina Concert
Manya A. Brachear for the Chicago Tribune (article & video)
Photography from Columbia College Students
More photos on Facebook
The Memorial Events will be the world premier of original sacred music by South African composer Vaughn Fayle with libretto (lyrics) by Susan Johnson.
They will feature…
- Documentary photography by award-winning Carlos Javier Ortiz.
- Soprano Jade Maze and Baritone Khary Laurent.
- Chicago Community Chorus with conductor Dr. Keith Hampton.
- Johnson College Prep Choral Program.
- Youth Choir and Marimba Ensemble from Holy Cross/IHM Parish.
- Chamber Soloists of North Park University.
- Spoken Word poetry by Mama Brenda Matthews.
- Artistic Direction by Steppenwolf for Young Adults.
This collaboration combines classical and folk music styles, an African-American youth choral group from Englewood, an Hispanic chorus and marimba group from Back of the Yards, a chamber ensemble from the north side, with documentary photography, spoken word poetry, and a candlelit vigil.
The events will be artistically beautiful, creating an ethos of sacred remembrance, but more importantly, they will bring our city together across neighborhood, racial, ethnic, religious, and economic dividing lines.
We must come together – we must mourn and work together – we must remember forward – if we are to end youth violence in Chicago.
Announcement for Memorial Events
and Official Public Flier
Your participation is vital to honor these children and families and to support peace in our city.
Union Star Missionary Baptist Church in Humboldt Park hosted our second Peace Table gathering. It was intentionally a smaller group of clergy and high risk youth, with about 40 youth and 30 clergy and CeaseFire workers.
There was a frank discussion of perceived urban myths, or things people often say or assume about youth violence that are not true.
Our first Peace Table on July 27 was a promising success. Attendance exceeded our expectations, with 50 clergy, 60 youth, and 20 CeaseFire youth workers. We had a diverse collection of clergy and lay leaders – Catholic, Mainline Protestant, Interfaith, and Muslim. CeaseFire brought high risk youth ranging in age from 16 to early 20s. We sat together at round tables over Subway sandwiches, chips, cookies and drinks, and talked – that is, the youth talked and the clergy listened.
Join us first Fridays for contemplative worship and prayer. Taizé worship blends meditative worship with silence and candle-light. We invite all spiritual pilgrims in our larger Hyde Park and South Side community to seek with us the peace of Christ for ourselves and our world. Please join us for worship at 7:30 pm and for a community dinner at 6:30 pm. Let us know if you or your faith community would like to get involved in planning these ecumenical services.