Story of the Week: ‘We are Bigger than This, We are Better Than This’

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Vigils are being held across the country after the massacre in Orlando, the deadliest mass murder in modern American history. Beyond Belief shared some moments from a vigil in Kansas City organized by local faith leaders, featured as our Finding America story of the week.

Rev. Donna Simon shared a message of love at the vigil.

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(Photo by Daniel Boothe)

“As a person of faith, and a member of the LGBT community, I can say that when I learned of the shootings, it felt like, ‘Here we are, again.’ There has been so much violence directed at this community, especially at our transgender community. We were once again in the crucible of being attacked. Now you add the peaceful religion of Islam into the mix, and you get all kinds of awful, awful reactions from people. What my religion says to do in these times, is to stop, pray, and love. And that is what we did at church today.”

Find more from the vigil at Beyond Belief. Experience the Finding America open-source documentary at

With digital and broadcast storytelling and events designed with partners in the interfaith community, Beyond Belief, based at KCPT, explores the interplay of religious life—and lives in which religion is absent—with youth culture, race, civic engagement, and economic disparity. The project is led by Steve Mencher.