'Time of reflection': Windber community holds prayer cross walk on Good Friday

Kelly Urban, The Tribune-Democrat, Johnstown, Pa.
·2 min read

Apr. 2—WINDBER — Despite cold temperatures, a group gathered to commemorate Good Friday with a cross walk in the Windber community.

More than a dozen people joined in with Windber Ministerium on Friday afternoon for a procession that began at Calvary United Methodist Church and made various stops throughout the community to offer prayers.

Mark Murchie, pastor of Scalp Level Church of the Brethren, said this year due to the pandemic the event would have a different feel.

"Other years, we'd stop inside churches and have a short service, but this year we wanted it to remain outdoors ," he said. "So we're stopping at 14 locations in the community to have a brief time of reflection on scripture that relate to Christ's death on the cross for our sins.

"We'll also have a short prayer for that location and some of those locations are the fire and police departments, businesses and medical buildings."

Murchie said group members were praying for people to receive Christ, to know the forgiveness of sins and the salvation in his name.

"To me, this is the most important day of the year; it's a day specifically set aside to remember Christ's death for us," he said. "We want to share that with our community, just the hope that is in Christ. We call it Good Friday. It was terribly tragic and horrific for Jesus, but even Jesus had joy set before him as he endured the cross knowing that it would bring about the forgiveness of sins and our salvation."

Amy Berkey, a member of Scalp Level Church of the Brethren, said she has participated in the cross walk for many years.

"It's just a nice thing that Windber does to carry the cross, because today Jesus died for our sins," the Windber resident said. "I really enjoy this and the fellowship with other people.

"I'm praying for different people in the world, and realizing and reflecting that Christ died for all our sins and took our healing upon the cross," she said.

Windber resident Robert Baker said participating in the cross walk is a way to share his faith with other believers.

"We're showing what Easter is all about," the Life Church member said. "Jesus paid the ultimate price for our sins, so the least I can do is participate and show the community what it means and (what) Jesus did for us."

Baker said while walking, he was praying for people to experience the love of Jesus.

"It's a witness that Jesus loved us so much he was willing to die on the cross," he said.

Murchie said the cross walk is an opportunity for people to connect with the heart of Christ.

"We're drawn even deeper into the love that he has for us," he said. "I hope that each walker is truly blessed in that way."