Joseph Saunders carries the cross.
A CARAVAN OF HUMANITY. A people of faith. It idles on 78th Place near Racine Avenue in the warm evening sun one late-summer Friday in June. Music blares from a shiny green SUV outfitted with loud speakers that will lead them on their sojourn in the streets of the South Side of Chicago from the doorsteps of the Faith Community of St. Sabina. It is perhaps a formidable showdown against the forces of darkness. 
It is a bout for the soul of the city, maybe even the bold makings of a revolution that will not be televised. In one corner stands Faith. In the other: Violence. Which will win?
John W. Fountain
Two reporters set out to chronicle their journey, covering every single march over 12 hot summer weeks in Chicago, through the heat and the elements, even as nightfall consumed the last glimpse of day. Chronicling the hope and also the marchers' pain—through the glaring sun and summer rain that would take this caravan of faith to street corners, where just hours earlier bullets reigned. Where the wounded had lain, felled by a shooter's deadly aim. 

Samantha Latson
Before summer’s end, this group of the faithful would come face to face with the Death Angel who came to claim even one of their own. Indeed more than one mother would be welcomed in to the unenviable club of being mother to a murdered son. Indeed the summer’s violence would be a foreshadowing of one of the city’s deadliest years on record with nearly 800 murdered and more than 3,500 people shot by year’s end.

But in the end, might an Invasion of Faith still proclaim victory over violence? Wrest the city’s soul from the forces of darkness that most often are manifested as brazen young Black men with guns whose bullets claim even the innocent and young. 

And what lessons, if any, might be learned from the church’s endeavor—a course of action for the good of the larger community of faith? Are there lessons perhaps for individuals or even for the press that often goes MIA when grassroots movements are pounding the pavement, doing the painstaking work to reform and rebuild community?

Summer Invasion seeks to capture that movement, the stories, faces and voices. It is a snapshot in time. The story of one church’s valiant effort. And it is a mirror of the effort needed to win back the streets from violence, even as another summer approaches and the fate of the soul of a city hangs in the balance.

From The Editors—

Website Navigation: This project site features written stories as well as video, photos and sound in an effort to capture and convey the Faith Community of St. Sabina’s Peace March in summer 2021.  

To see videos, click on photos that appear on both sides of the Home Page; or click on video tab for a video player containing entire project video playlist.

To read stories, simply scroll the page. When you have reached the end of the page of stories displayed, simply click on “Older Posts” to view additional stories. The site also includes other features, including more information about St. Sabina and the reporters as well as a Special Feature also listed on a tab. 

Please share this project site. Thank you.
Two little girls play with chalk at a park during a Back-to-School picnic at summer's end sponsored
by the Faith Community of St. Sabina (Photos: John W. Fountain and Samantha Latson)