CINCINNATI -- The Ray Tensing murder trial might be a kind of local Rorschach blot for those watching it unfold: For many, the events in the courtroom reflect a complex ongoing conversation about race, law enforcement and justice in the United States, and many groups feel they have a stake in the outcome.
But for the 50 people who took part in a seven-lap 'Jericho Walk' around the Hamilton County Courthouse Tuesday night, the complicated issue at hand calls for a straightforward response.
No matter the outcome of the trial or the intensity of the conversation surrounding it, the faith groups that attended said they felt a responsibility to encourage empathy and compassion for everyone involved.
"When you are looking at it through a lens of our Father, we can see both perspectives," said Rachael Quinn, who attended with a group from Crossroads. "We can see that both sides are hurting. Both sides are equally in need of a holy God to save them."
The Jericho Walk included seven laps as a reference to the seven times Israelites circled the famously impenetrable walls of Jericho before toppling them in the Bible. Just like the soldiers in the story, the demonstrators Tuesday night emphasized the importance of getting boots on the ground and making their message known in public.
"We are all on the same journey together," said Rabbi Miriam Terlinchamp, who helped organize the event through the Amos Project. "We can’t just send out prayers into the world and think that it’ll work. Our hands are in God’s hands in this world, and we need to make a change together."
One of Sam DuBose’s cousins also attended the demonstration. She said the last two days had been hard on her family, but she appreciated the message conveyed by the demonstrators Tuesday night.