The Better Together Rally Unites People of Faith to Pray for a Kinder Future

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The Better Together Rally The Better Together Rally

As the weekend’s demonstrations came to an end, members of the interfaith community joined together downtown on Sunday.

Community pastors called this event the Better Together Rally, a peaceful gathering for members of various churches to pray for a brighter future. 

“We're going to mourn together. We're going to repent and take a posture of humility, and then we're going to rejoice because we have hope that we believe that Charlottesville cannot be known of a place of division, but a place of unity,” Senior Pastor Tony Schiavone.

The unifying event took place at the Sprint Pavilion. Participants shared hopes to rebuild. 

“We recover by putting emphasis on building relationships, conversing with people we don't know personally,” said Pastor Stanley Woodfolk.

The Better Together Rally brought members of different denominations into one community to reflect on last year's violence.

“It compels people to break down walls to get to know one another across church, from different churches and different races and different ethnicities,” said Schiavone. 

For parents like Sam Heath, it was a chance to talk about everything that is happened over the last year with their kids. “We've talked to her about everybody has value, we should love all people, we should be kind to all people no matter what skin colors, no matter what hair styles like.”

Heath said he hopes this event is something he and his family can look back on. “Years from now, when they're older, we would love to look back and say you were there you did this thing.” 

Many members attending Sunday night's Better Together Rally also participated in Charlottesville Prayer Coalition’s prayer walk across the city, visiting various sites for reflection on last year's violence.