The Journey of Hope presentation at TPUMC on Sunday October 22 at 10am in the Labyrinth Room, puts a human face on the issue of the death penalty. Mr. Bill Pelke, murder victim family member, President and Cofounder of Journey of Hope, and Ms. Terri Steinberg, mother of Justin Wolfe, condemned to death, will speak.
Bill authored a book entitled Journey of Hope: From Violence to Healing, which details the May 14, 1985 murder of his grandmother Ruth Elizabeth Pelke, a Bible teacher, by four teenage girls. Bill, a retired steelworker, has dedicated his life to working for abolition of the death penalty.
At age 20, Terri Steinberg’s son, an ex-high school football player and normal, average, all-American, suburban kid was sentenced to death for a murder he did not commit. In 2002, he became the youngest man on Virginia’s death row. At first Terri and her family, and even Justin believed that somehow the justice system would set this right. Instead they began a desperate quest to save Justin’s life and bring him home. Justin’s death sentence was vacated in 2011 however the fact that he remains in prison to this day continues the ongoing tragedy and failure of a broken system. Terri has traveled with the Journey all over the world, speaking out not only on behalf of Justin but for all of those still on death rows and the families that continue to suffer at the hands of a broken system.
Led by family members of murder victims, joined by families with inmates on death row, the exonerated and others; personal stories touch hearts and change minds as they advocate for alternatives to the death penalty, encourage forgiveness as a way of healing and endorse restorative justice as a way of life. Contact Shirley Watkins, firstname.lastname@example.org, for information on this important event.
Established in 1846, our church is grounded in history and vision.
Today, the people of Travis Park Church continue seeking to make the world a better place through transformation of self and community.
We serve and learn as brothers and sisters from all walks of life:
rich and poor,
housed and homeless,
gay and straight,
black and brown and white,
secular and sacred,
PhD and GED.
The people of Travis Park Church seek to live and love as God does: passionately and unconditionally.
God calls us on a journey forward, to break down the walls of prejudice, and to embrace all our brothers and sisters.
We believe the basic themes which run through the entire Biblical story and the core values of the Christian faith are God’s unconditional love and justice for all of us and the call for each of us to embody this in our own lives. Our mission at Travis Park is the practice of unconditional love and justice.
Travis Park is unconditional love and justice in action.
Our commitment to unconditional love means that we welcome, affirm and celebrate, without judgment, ALL people. Yes, we mean all races, nationalities, ages, genders, marital states, and sexual orientations. We mean the rich, the poor, the brilliant, the ignorant, the irreverent, the powerful, the homeless, the disabled, the uneducated, the illiterate, the religious, the mentally ill, the beautiful, the ugly, the average and the merely above average. We could go on and on, but we really mean everybody, and that includes you, too.
Travis Park's commitment to justice means our congregation strives to remove political, cultural, and societal barriers both in the church and community that prevent people from being who God created them to be. This commitment is not based in anybody's idea of political correctness, but in the actions and teachings of Jesus. The closer our lives mirror his life, the more available we are to experience and become God's new creation.
Travis Park Church is affiliated with the Reconciling Ministries Network, a group of United Methodist congregations who have adopted statements welcoming people of all sexual orientations and gender identities.