Prisoners Prayer Walk

Prayer Walk for Justice

Last Sunday after the 7:00 p.m. service The Social Justice Network inspired by Susan Gapka held their annual Prisoner’s Prayer Walk for Justice from MCC Toronto to the former Don Jail. Thanks to Rev. Deana Dudley and Rev Sam Morris for their opening prayers and for Deacon Jon Mackereth for leading the walk with the rhythm of his drum and for leading the prayers at the former Don Jail.

It was a time of spiritual energy as people shared their concerns for all the injustices that occur around the world and here in Canada against prisoners or all types. Here in Canada we may not have many political prisoners but our treatment of those incarcerated leaves much to be desired especially if they are of aboriginal prisoners, trans prisoners, prisoners kept in solitary confinement or people jailed without bail or charge within the immigration system. A lot still to be done.

“What started as a one time event behind the walls of Millhaven Prison has become an international day of solidarity. On August 10th, prisoners around the world fast, refuse to work, and remain in their cells while those of us on the outside organize to show our solidarity with those struggling behind the bars, to show that they are not forgotten and to draw attention to the conditions inside prisons.”

“General consensus on the purpose of Prisoner’s Justice Day is that it is a day of mourning, remembrance, advocacy and protest. It is a day when prisoner’s have the opportunity to mourn the death of fellow prisoner’s often referred to as, “brothers” and “sisters” who lost their lives while serving their sentences. It is a day when prisoner’s and prisoner advocates can give a voice to some of the stories of injustice and human rights abuses that occur within the prison system.”

“To do nothing in response to personal or social problems, is probably the greatest denigration or duty that we commit against others and ourselves. Moreover, every life is of immense value. Injustices done, no matter where, or to whom deserve a proactive and compassionate response. Compassion also involves grief, which is within everyone’s right to express.”

Donald Peter St Amand