Good Friday is a very important day in the faith of Christianity. This sacred day, the Friday before Easter, is a holiday used to commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. It is on this day that Christians reflect on what Jesus sacrificed to save them, and the pain and torture He endured as He carried his own cross through Jerusalem to Golgotha. For the last 45 years, there has been a Cross Walk in Winston-Salem, sponsored by Trinity Moravian Church. They gather on Good Friday in downtown Winston-Salem and carry a full-sized cross through town as a service of reflection and personal prayer to remind them of the true meaning of Holy Week, and prepare their hearts for Easter Sunday.
In February of 1975, Pastor Phil Bauguess had an idea. He wanted the youth of Trinity Moravian to build and carry a 200-pound cross through town on Good Friday. Though they weren’t really sure about his idea, they went along with his plan. At that first Cross Walk, they met atop the Sears Building downtown. Pastor Bauguess spoke of what Jesus endured on his last days on Earth and how, on this Walk, they should contemplate the thoughts of Jesus, the people around Him and his disciples during that time. He also made clear that this was not to be a parade or spectacle of any kind, but a way to demonstrate their faith and grow closer to understanding Jesus Christ. This tradition has continued at Trinity Moravian Church, and serves as a powerful reminder of the true meaning of Good Friday.
Though it was not a part of the original plan of the Cross Walk, it often serves as a mission to the people of Winston-Salem. When people see this cross being carried through town, they cannot help but be curious about what they see. They may even follow the cross and join the Walkers in Salem Square to learn more. It becomes a wonderful opportunity for the participants of the Cross Walk to share the significance of Good Friday with this community.
The Walk begins at Loaves & Fishes, located at 657 West 5th Street, where they ask people to gather around 10:30. It all starts with a reading of Christ’s procession to Golgotha. Then begins the silent prayer procession through downtown Winston-Salem, where the walkers take turns carrying the cross, 6-8 people at a time. The route goes through downtown and ends at Salem Square, where the walkers are greeted by a Moravian Band, and all will join in a Good Friday Liturgy of Confession.
Everyone is welcome to join this event. People of all ages are encouraged to come with their families, bringing strollers, and even their dogs on leash. If you feel called to participate, but are unable to walk the mile physically, you are welcome to greet the walkers at Salem Square when they arrive. The church will provide a van to shuttle walkers back to the starting point parking lot at the conclusion of the event. There will also be a police escort to ensure safety at street crossings. Walkers are encouraged to bring water and wear hats and sunscreen.
If you would like more information about Trinity Moravian Church and The Cross Walk, you can visit their website at trinitymoravian.org. Trinity Moravian Church has been a part of this community since 1886. They are located at 220 E. Sprague St. in Winston-Salem, and are ready to welcome you and your family to their church if you would like to plan a visit.