We are sharing these inspiring images from the Out of the Darkness events held on World AIDS Day, Dec. 1, as GMHC enters its 41st year in the fight against the HIV and AIDS epidemic.
Our community met that evening at the NYC AIDS Memorial for a candlelight vigil, then walked through the West Village to St. John’s Lutheran Church for the reading of names of those we have lost to AIDS-related complications.
That was followed by a reflective yet joyful gathering with powerful speakers and incredible artistry from the performers, as we uplift the lives of everyone living with and affected by HIV and AIDS.
Kudos to Broadway musical theater actor Courter Simmons for his moving rendition of “Sheridan Square,” penned by Howard Ashman, who died in 1991 of AIDS-related complications, and for his incredible mashup with drag artist Sutton Lee Seymour of “I Am What I Am” and “This Is Me.”
We appreciate the NYC Flaggers for adding kinetic vibrancy to the gathering and Christopher Williams, the impresario behind the 10-foot-tall Larry Kramer Pride Puppet, who passed the basket for the Blessings of the Safer Sex Kits.
We are also grateful to our speakers: Bishop Stacey Latimer of Love Alive International, Rev. Austin Newberry of St. John’s Lutheran Church, Dr. Ron Grossman, HIV activist Mika De Roo, and New York City Council Speaker Adrienne E. Adams via video.
GMHC co-sponsored Out of the Darkness with founding sponsor American Run for the End of AIDS (AREA), ERC Consultants, the International AIDS Prevention Initiative, the Keith Haring Foundation, the NYC AIDS Memorial, and St. John’s Lutheran Church.
Thank you to everyone who made the evening so meaningful. Our collective work continues.