What if we could circle the city with love for the world to see before the Republican National Convention?
Thousands of people will stand side-by-side in a diverse declaration of just what the city stands for. A grassroots group is rallying thousands to "Circle the City with Love," hoping to show a unified Cleveland to the world.
Sister Rita Petruziello had a vision and is Seeing the Possible.
It will kick off the week that the world is watching.
Beginning Sunday, July 17 at 3 p.m., the plan is to have thousands span the Cleveland's Hope Memorial Bridge for 30 minutes of silence, shoulder-to-shoulder, in solidarity, to show the world what this city on the rise stands on.
“It’s bringing us all together as one city," said Sr. Rita Petruziello.
Her hope is that diversity becomes our brand. A Sister of St. Joseph for 55 years, the idea came from a meeting of the sister minds.
"We were thinking about the state of affairs with all the politics and negativity that is going on, and we thought, 'Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could circle the city with love?' I took that notion and I could not let it go. It was sitting inside of me, and I said I have to do something with this," Sr. Rita said.
Different ethnic backgrounds, different faiths, or maybe no declared faith at all with the same goal -- to circle this city they love.
"This is really a witness for the fact that there is something more real and healing really present in this city," says co-organizer, George Hrbek,a retired Lutheran Minister.
The Keep The Promise March is set to join forces on the bridge.
"To say that we are here to stand in solidarity and to bring peace to the city of Cleveland," said LaRaun Clayton, with the AIDS Task Force of Greater Cleveland.
"It's caught on. It’s something we need. People crave this, and they are coming from all over," said Sr. Rita.
Want to be there to feel the love?
There are two meeting spots. St. Ignatius High School in the city's west side or the Wolstein Center in Cleveland's east side at East 18th Street and Carnegie Avenue.
Pockets of peace will also be popping up simultaneously at several churches and other venues all over Northeast Ohio.
The Keep the Promise March will join forces with Circle the City with Love at the event.
"Say that we are here to stand in solidarity and to bring peace to the city of Cleveland," LaRaun Clayton, with the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland.
Click here to learn more about Circle the City with Love.