Cobb residents walk to show support for immigrants
by Rachel Gray
April 18, 2014 04:00 AM | 2112 views | 7 7 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A line of 200 to 300 people march down the sidewalk along South Cobb Drive on Wednesday afternoon in what was termed a pilgrimage for immigrants during Holy Week. Cobb police units escorted the walkers who stopped at Austell Road, where a water station was set up and bottles of water given to the marchers who were heading to the Marietta Square.
A line of 200 to 300 people march down the sidewalk along South Cobb Drive on Wednesday afternoon in what was termed a pilgrimage for immigrants during Holy Week. Cobb police units escorted the walkers who stopped at Austell Road, where a water station was set up and bottles of water given to the marchers who were heading to the Marietta Square.
slideshow
A group of 200 to 300 Cobb residents trekked 8 miles from Smyrna to downtown Marietta to show solidarity between American citizens and immigrants from around the world.

Coinciding with the Christian Holy Week and Jewish Passover, this was the sixth year the Holy Week Pilgrimage for Immigrants walked the streets of Cobb. The group formed at the St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church, on the corner of King Springs and Cooper Lake roads in Smyrna, then traveled down South Cobb Drive towards the Square.

P.J. Edwards, a parishioner at St. Thomas and an organizer of the pilgrimage, said this year’s crowd was smaller than the 1,600 marchers last year.

Still, Edwards said the group includes members of St. Thomas, as well as residents from other parts of town and various denominations.

“It is pretty phenomenal the people who are out today,” Edwards said. He added the many people who stopped to ask for information were “surprisingly” supportive.

Edwards, who moved to the Atlanta area in 1991, has been a parishioner at St. Thomas since 1995.

“When I started it was a majority white church, and relatively quickly, it has become a majority Hispanic church,” Edwards said.

The minority increase was by design.

“We are a very welcoming church,” Edwards said, of the congregation from Africa and Asia, as well as an Indian vicar.

The church, founded in 1966, can only seat 600 people at a time in the sanctuary, which Edwards said is small for a Catholic church in the Cobb area.

Every Sunday, St. Thomas holds four English services and three Spanish services, from 6 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Edwards said he is a conservative, who believes in family values.

“I believe people who work hard should be rewarded,” said Edwards, emphasizing that the Hispanic families he has come to know are hard workers and often give back to community.

Thursday’s march was a peaceful symbol of communities coming together in solidarity against injustice, evident by the wood cross carried at the front of the line with the names of children who have been affected by immigration.

“We are all equal under God’s eyes,” Edwards said.

The walk ended with U.S. born citizens washing the feet of recent immigrants, including some who are involved in deportation proceedings.

Then the duo switched while holding hands and looking at each other, in order to see the dignity of the other person and recognize their similarities, Edwards said.

During the feet washing, the participants sang “When I look into your eyes, I see the face of Jesus” in Spanish.

Comments
(7)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
Loren Bagby
|
April 18, 2014
Mr P.J. Edwards, you are not a conservative and you do not believe in family values if you think it is OK to break the law. And as someone who is supposedly Catholic, you should know that the Vatican has spoken out against illegal immigration. First people have a right to immigration but they must do so in accord with the laws and regulations of the place they are immigrating to. And secondly, mass immigration is wrong without very good cause (such as outright war or famine) because it does two things, it displaces the residents of one area, and it empties out and destroys the areas that the immigrants are leaving. But let's face it, it is not really immigration, it is migration. It is an intentional, concerted, and arrogant effort to make the U.S. a hispanic country.
Watcher...
|
April 18, 2014
Loren Bagby understands the Illegal Immigration issue. It is truly migration!

To really understand illegal migration, I suggest: "The Camp of the Saints," by Jean Raspail.
Call it what it is
|
April 18, 2014
Don't have a problem with immigrants who enter our country legally. However, illegals need to be sent home ASAP. People need to wake up and see that illegal immigrants are lowering wages, bankrupting hospitals, and living off our taxes. No country in the world except the US would allow people in our country illegally to actually stage protests and marches. When they do law enforcement should pull up a bus and deport them. We are all equal under God's eyes but we are not all US citizens and I seriously doubt Jesus would approve of people breaking the law when there's a legal way to enter the country.
Schools suffering
|
April 18, 2014
The US states it is against the law to come here illegally, but they have a law that states it is against the law to not allow them to enroll in school. A little contradictory. If they were not allow to enroll their children in school, most of them would leave. We are the only country in the world who will educate illegals. It has drained our country! Children walk over the line from Mexico to California in droves every morning to be educated! It is just wrong!
James67
|
April 18, 2014
Legal immigration si. Illegal immigration no.
D.G. in Clarkdale
|
April 18, 2014
Immigration is fine, illegal immigration and rewarding law breakers isn't, so law breakers can just get over it. This nation doesn't need anymore ignorant third world leftist, low information voters, we've enough native born ones as is....
Mike In Smyrna
|
April 18, 2014
Yea, Yea
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides