Vancouver hosts interfaith service for those affected by opioid crisis – The Catholic Register

May 19, 2017

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – As the strains of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” filled the sanctuary of Christ Church Anglican Cathedral in Vancouver, one by one the people in the pews rose silently. Muffled sobbing could be heard from the back corner of the church as a prayer vigil for those affected by the city’s opioid crisis ended.

The May 18 prayer vigil was organized by an interfaith committee that included the Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver and Providence Health Care, the Catholic organization that runs several hospitals and community clinics in the city.

The Rev. Peter Elliott, dean of the cathedral parish, said various religious organizations came together to hold the vigil because all had been affected by the opioid crisis in some way. He said the committee sought to provide an occasion to remember those lost to drug overdoses and to give their loved ones a chance to “honour them without the sting of stigma.”

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