SOUTH CAROLINA: Tentative Memorial Designed for Emanuel Nine Victims
CHARLESTON, S.C. — A member of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church told their current pastor, the Rev. Eric S.C. Manning, last year: “It’s hard for me to comprehend someone could be so evil. Is it possible he’s possessed? Like Satan?”
Manning had been the people’s choice. It was now his job to unite, to comfort, to reassure. The church’s former pastor, and state senator, the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, was one of the nine black churchgoers gunned down by a white supremacist during a Bible study in the Charleston place of worship.
Now, three years later, the church is looking to cement the tragedy with a memorial of remembrance, not of the evil that caused it, but of those who endured it and the perseverance that followed.
“People come by every day and leave flowers and notes,” Michael Arad, the architect, said. “There’s no place for them to go. We need someplace to say ‘We stand with you, we want to honor how the families and the congregation responded.”
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