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OWS 2.0 D17: "God Was Arrested!" Rev. Michael Ellick, Judson

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Published on Dec 27, 2011

New York, December 17--After the arrests in Trinity Church's vacant, unused lot, OccupyFaith progressive clergy who support OWS's bid to use the lot on a temporary basis as a forum for protest and dialogue spoke out in Du Arte Square. "Our Voices Need Space" was inscribed on the ground in giant letters. December 17 is the third-month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, Bradley Manning's 24th birthday, and the one-year anniversary of Mohammed Bouazizi's setting himself on fire in Tunisia in response to repressive regulations that did not allow him to operate his food cart and make a living--an act which set off a wave of protests in Tunisian and throughout North Africa. Filmed by Squaring Off. For daily schedule for OWS: nycga.net/events
courtesy Marc Beja www.amny.com June 10 2012
A dozen Occupy Wall Street protesters and clergy members are set to go on trial Monday for breaking into a church-owned lot in SoHo during a demonstration in December.

Hundreds gathered at Trinity Wall Street's vacant Duarte Square on Dec. 17, hoping to find a new home after the city evicted the protesters from Zuccotti Park. Sixty-five were arrested for tearing though a fence and entering the lot against the church's wishes.

More than two-thirds of those who were charged accepted deals to avoid jail time, but those expected in court today wanted to go to trial instead. The group includes retired Bishop George E. Packard, who was photographed climbing a ladder over the lot's fence.

Since December, the protesters have been frustrated with Trinity for not letting them use the space and for pressing charges, even though church officials have repeatedly said they agree with OWS' message.

"Trinity had an opportunity to offer sanctuary to the occupiers," said Gideon Oliver of the National Lawyers Guild, which is representing the protesters. "Every time the protesters came knocking on the church's door, they've called the police."

In a statement, Trinity Rector James H. Cooper said the church is "not seeking retribution or punishment" against the protesters, but said they "consistently refused" to accept the DA's offer, which would have spared them jail time.

The protesters face up to 90 days on the misdemeanor trespass charges if convicted. A spokeswoman for the DA declined to comment on the case.

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