On the night of December 6th Welcoming Gainesville held an interfaith service at the steps of City Hall. “Light in Darkness” was the title of the event and it was meant to send a message of love and compassion to all residents of Gainesville. Over 100 people joined us in lighting candles of peace, singing songs of welcome, and hearing some of our most prominent community members inlcuding Mayor Lauren Poe, former UF President Bernie Machen and UF Professor Zoharah Simmons reaffirm that being a Welcoming City is not an empty promise, but the beginning of a movement that will lead Gainesville towards a more peaceful and inclusive future. In the words of Mayor Lauren Poe, “Gainesville is a safe haven for all of those (who are facing discrimination). We send them the message that they are loved, that they are welcomed, that they are part of our community. This takes work… We are only on the front edges of this movement.”
Read more about the event here!