Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Cool T-shirt, huh?

Here's the latest installation from Robert Hoelscher, campaign coordinator for Murder Victims' Families for Reconciliation and a participant in the ongoing Journey of Hope...From Violence to Healing:

Yesterday (Monday, October 16) teams fanned out into Northern Virginia for events at a high school, prison, university, a Catholic church, and on Capital Hill in Washington, DC. I pulled out about 3 p.m. with family member Vera Crutcher and death row family member Tracy Spirko to head to Charlottesville for the night, where we stayed at the home of Democratic activists and JOH supporters Tom and Betty Gallagher (thank you Tom and Betty!). As the evening wound down, I talked for awhile with Tracy, who was on the computer cruising the internet trying to find out whether Gov. Taft of Ohio had issued a reprieve for her husband John, who has an execution date. She went to bed with no answer.

This morning (Tuesday, October 17) Vera, Tracy, Betty and I met with Virginia state delegate David Toscano. David is a staunch abolitionist and spent a gracious hour with us discussing legislative strategies to advance death penalty related issues. It was a good meeting. While we were meeting with David in Charlottesville, the rest of the group "broke camp" in Falls Church and headed to Harrisonburg for the next
phase of the Journey. We drove over to Harrisonburg after our meeting.

This afternoon in our hotel we were treated to massage services donated by a local JOH supporter. One after the other, Journey participants filed into Room 151 for a genuine "ahhhhh" refresher. Boy, did it hit the spot. As I write this, the crew is out doing evening events at James Madison University here inHarrisonburg, the Central United Methodist Church in Staunton, and the Augusta Coalition for Peace and Justice in Waynesboro.

Tomorrow (Wednesday, October 18) looks like a very full day, at the end of which we'll go to Roanoke. I still await my "inaugural" JOH storytelling event, what with group events on Saturday, the cancelled event on Sunday due to bad directions, travel yesterday, and a one-on-one meeting today. I'm looking forward to finally sharing the experience the others are having. Stories are starting to trickle back of tears shed, changing hearts and minds, and other special moments.

1 comment:

Jana Schroeder said...

Greetings to all of the fine people on the Journey of Hope!

Reading about the VA Journey brings back many amazing memories of the first Journey in 1993 in Indiana and of the Ohio journey in 2003. Because i was so closely involved with the Ohio journey I know the huge impact it had on that state. I also know of the profound impact that each Journey participant has on individuals along the way. I can't tell you all how much I wish I was there to give a hug and a helping hand. I know how intense things get on the journey but that it's also a really healing time for participants to be together and share with one another. please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. Bill, if you're reading this, please tell everyone I said hello.

Much love,
Jana