COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The Ohio Department of Health’s data shows 9,990 Ohioans have died from COVID-19. Nationwide there are more than 380,000 deaths. The First Congregational Church in downtown Columbus is making sure all those lives are not forgotten.
“All of these flags are someone who mattered to God and they should matter to us,” said Emily Corzine, Associate Minister at the church.
There are currently hundreds of flags on the lawn outside the church. Each one represents 1,000 lives. Some of the flags have Ohio stickers on them as a tribute to Ohioans whose lives have been lost to the coronavirus.
“It’s a reminder that we should not forget these individuals and a reminder we cannot be numb to the loss of life,” she said. “Collectively in our own congregation but collectively as a state and also as our nation.”
The church’s youth group has been putting the flags up. They started in December and have been adding more as the death toll rises. A few congregation members have died from COVID-19 and every member has been or still is affected by the coronavirus in some way, according to Corzine.
“Seeing these flags is a reminder to me that we cannot stop loving one another and praying for one another and helping these families and helping others grieve the loss of loved ones,” she said.
She also says the flags are a reminder the fight against COVID-19 is not over and everyone’s help is needed.
“I think it’s a grim reminder as people come and see all of these flags that it’s important for us to do our part,” she said. “To socially distance, wash our hands, to wear masks, to be safe, so that we are not only caring for ourselves but we’re caring for others.”