A vigil for peace and unity held on St. Mark’s Field

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A vigil for peace and unity held on St. Mark’s Field
Pilgrim Church’s Peter Zschokke plays the first of several songs during a vigil for peace and unity on March 11 at St. Mark’s Field. (Photo/Maureen Sullivan)

SOUTHBOROUGH – On a corner of St. Mark’s Field, in the twilight of a late afternoon, about 20 men and women gathered to help promote peace and unity locally and worldwide.

The fifth annual Vigil for Peace on March 11 was sponsored by Neighbors for Peace and Hate Has No Home Here. It featured several speakers and a chance to meditate.

Rev. Charley Eastman, senior minister for Pilgrim Church, reminded attendees that they were standing on Nipmuc ground. He then quoted a Native American proverb – “No tree has branches so foolish as to fight among themselves.”

“We are all part of the same tree,” he said.

Eastman reflected on some of the troubled spots in the world, such as Ukraine, and acknowledged that some may be affected by the “spirit of helplessness.”

He then invited attendees to “take a moment to breathe,” leading a few moments of meditation.

State Rep. Kate Donaghue, whose district includes Southborough, spoke about the rise in homelessness. The state is currently converting part of a building off Lyman Street in Westborough into a shelter for homeless families.

“We need to be welcoming to these families,” said Donaghue.

Donaghue also spoke of the need for civility during the season of local elections and Town Meetings.

“It’s being respectful with those who disagree with you,” she said.

The group then sang a few songs, accompanied by the Pilgrim Church’s Peter Zschokke on guitar. Following the final song, the candles were lit, and a benediction said before the vigil ended.

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