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Greenwood community gathers for interfaith vigil

Greenwood Vigil.jpg
Posted at 11:26 PM, Jul 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-23 09:24:21-04

GREENWOOD — Dozens gathered for an interfaith vigil in Greenwood Amphitheater on Friday evening. The group prayed for everyone affected by the mass shooting at Greenwood Park Mall on Sunday.

"This shooting will not define Greenwood. It will not define our community. I will not allow that to happen," Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers (R) said.

The group held prayers for those who lost their lives, those who were injured, witnesses, Eli Dicken, and the entire community.

"Is it going to be safe to go to the grocery store? Coming together makes us feel we're not alone in this," Margarita Hart said.

Hart is an end-of-life chaplain at Esperanza Ministries, a resource center for the immigrant community. She says many are mourning the loss of Pedro Pineda and Rosa Mirian Rivera de Pineda, two immigrants from El Salvador who lost their lives in Sunday's shooting.

"They come together as a community, they're very united, but it is worrisome for them to have that happen, as it is for anyone else," she says.

Hiren Patel worships at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan, a Hindu temple in Greenwood.

"Our faiths may be different, but we as human beings on the same, our souls are the same, our life blood is the same color," he says. "It kind of just reminds us who we are. It doesn't matter what we believe in. If you're a human being, your soul has to be shaken up by these kinds of events."

"It is extremely important that we all come together, that we put our differences aside. That we learn to reach out to our neighbors, to show love, to show support and to stop the hate. Stop the violence," Myers said. "How we react to it? How we embrace the hurting? How we support each other? That will be our legacy."

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