Annual Interfaith Memorial Observance for the Indigent
Wednesday, May 29, at First United Methodist Church – Chicago Temple
Chicago, IL (May 22, 2013) - The Archdiocese of Chicago’s Office for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, a sponsoring member of the Ministry for Indigent Persons, will be participating in the 28th Annual Interfaith Memorial Observance for the Indigent at noon on Wednesday, May 29, at First United Methodist Church – Chicago Temple, 77 West Washington Street. The yearly service commemorates the lives of indigent babies, children and adults who are buried each year by the Cook County Medical Examiner.
Dr. Philip Blackwell, Senior Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Chicago Temple will officiate the service and Rev. Edward R. Udovic, C.M., DePaul University Vice President for Teaching and Learning Resources and Senior Executive for University Mission, will be the keynote speaker.
Leaders from the major religious organizations in Chicago will offer prayers and inspirational messages. During the memorial portion of the service, the names of each individual buried by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office will be read, a bell will chime intermittently and five candles will be lit. The service offers the community an opportunity to act as a surrogate family to people who were buried without family or friends to mark their passing.
Now in its 28th year, the Memorial Service was founded by W. Earl Lewis, who was a doorman working in Chicago in 1981 when he learned about the mass burials. Inspired by the need to raise public awareness of this situation, Mr. Lewis labored from 1984 to 1986 to set up a network to establish an Annual Interfaith Memorial Service for the indigent. Mr. Lewis’ work is carried on by the Ministry for the Indigent.
For more information contact Sr. Joan McGuire, OP, Director of the Office for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs at 312-534-5324 or visit the website at www.archchicago.org/departments/ecumenical/