On Thursday, I had the opportunity to talk with Gina Mangiamele, a parishioner of St. Benedict Parish in Ontario County, and learn more about the unique project she created in response to the violence and hatred going on in the world. Through crocheting and the help of volunteers across the country, she’s creating a giant rosary for peace with beads representing different countries of the world. After my interview, I left St. Mary Church in Canandaigua feeling inspired by her actions to bring a bit of peace in a world that is in such dire need of it.
Just a few hours later, as I sat in the Catholic Courier newsroom, my feelings quickly turned to despair and anger as I heard of the newsroom shooting at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Md. As a fellow journalist, this one really hit close to home. It was hard not to think of our newsroom and my colleagues here at Courier, along with the journalists that I have previously worked with, who continue to report on the news in Rochester and other parts of the country. These acts of violence continue to happen in our country, and it is just so easy to grow numb to it.
But while watching the news of this tragedy, my mind went back to Gina and her giant rosary for peace. To many, this is not enough to solve the problems in our society, and I completely agree with that feeling. More needs to be done. Yet, for change to happen, it must start with us, and I think Gina is demonstrating that through her giant rosary for peace initiative. Spreading peace and love can go a long way. I continue to pray for peace in our country and in our world.