Community scripture and prayer walk draws crowd of over 150 after last year’s cancellation

By Josh Bootsma

LANSING, Ill. (April 2, 2021) – After COVID-19 cancelled last year’s Good Friday “Way of the Cross” walk, the Lansing community gathered at noon on Good Friday to walk, reflect, and listen to scripture readings after a challenging year.

Good Friday
Friday marked the fourth Good Friday “Way of the Cross” walk in Lansing after last year’s event was cancelled. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

Since the Lansing Good Friday tradition started in 2017, some Lansing churches have collaborated to create a physical and scriptural representation of Jesus Christ’s walk before he was crucified. The walk starts in the parking lot of St. Ann Catholic Church and moves roughly three-quarters of a mile west to Trinity Lutheran Church, with fourteen stops along the way — each assigned to a Bible passage. After each reading, the crowd responds, “Lord Jesus, help us walk in your steps.”

Good Friday
Good Friday walkers began to congregate in front of St. Ann Church leading up to noon on Good Friday. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)

Five men carried a 200-pound cross throughout the walk, and were ushered west on Ridge Road by Lansing police officers. Lansing Public Works also helped set up cones and direct traffic during the event.

Good Friday
Before the walk, the roughly 200-pound cross was unloaded from a truck and placed in front of St. Ann Catholic Church. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)
Good Friday
From left to right: Tom Mosley, and Ted, Charlie, and Lou Gray helped carry the cross during Friday’s walk. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)
The religious assembly receives opening remarks and instructions before the fourth Good Friday Stations of the Cross event. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Good Friday
Five pastors read scripture during Friday’s event. Front row, from left to right: Sandra Bustamante and Fr. Mark Kalema of St. Ann Catholic Parish, Jonathan Vitale of Lansing Assembly, Dave Price of First United Methodist Church, and John Holyer of Trinity Lutheran Church. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

Pastors John Holyer of Trinity Lutheran Church, Jonathan Vitale of Lansing Assembly of God, Fr. Mark Kalema and Sandra Bustamante of St. Ann Catholic Parish, and David Price of First United Methodist Church all read scripture and led the crowd of over 150 people during Friday’s walk.

The crowd moving from one station to the next:

Good Friday
Tom Mosley and the other cross-carriers lead the crowd escorted by Lansing Police. (Photo: Dan Bovino)
Good Friday
The crowd pauses its westward walk on Ridge Road to listen and reflect on a scripture reading. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)
Sandra Bustamante of St. Ann Catholic Parish reads a Bible passage. (Photo: Dan Bovino)
The bright sunshine helped make the 45-degree weather more pleasant. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Over 150 people were part of the the walk west on Ridge Road. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)

In past years, a service has been held at Trinity Lutheran Church. In the interest of keeping the large crowd in the open air due to COVID concerns, Pastor Holyer prayed for the assembly before the event ended.

Good Friday
Instead of ending with an indoor service, a closing prayer was offered outside of Trinity Lutheran Church. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Friday’s walk was a successful return to form after a year of being apart. (Photo: Josh Bootsma)

St. Ann Catholic Church is located at 3010 Ridge Road, Lansing, IL. Trinity Lutheran Church is located at 2505 Indiana Avenue, Lansing IL.

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