For billions of people, Friday (March 29) is Good Friday, just two days ahead of Easter Sunday.
For many in the Sioux Empire, that means an annual tradition just outside of South Dakota's biggest prison. Prayer and hope filled a small grassy area just east of the penitentiary grounds that one day the death penalty will be gone for good.
It wasn't too long ago that the state of South Dakota executed two of its five inmates on death row at the State Penitentiary.
For an event that's been going on for more than two decades, this year was especially important for people to spread their message of hope, on this Good Friday.
"Killing people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong doesn't make sense," Michael Sprong said.
That's the message of the Good Friday Vigil against the Death Penalty, ever year.
"Whether or not we're going to repeal the death penalty, meanwhile we set the groundwork and remain faithful to it," Michael Sprong said.
Michael Sprong says it's morally wrong for those, who claim to be Christians, to support the death penalty.
"I don't want my name connected to the killing of people in SD. I'm a citizen here and I'm represented when the state kills people, and I'm here to say not in my name," Sprong said.
Beth Preheim has attended this vigil since 1992.
"It's a way for my own personal journey to make a choice for life, I'm asking people in South Dakota to abolish the death penalty," Beth Preheim said.
It was not only a time for prayer but a chance to sign a living will affirming that, if the signer is murdered, the person responsible will not be executed by the state.
And for some here, it's official, again.
"I did it about 20 years ago. I wanted to update and say that I'm holding steadfast in that, and that allows my husband and family to know that is what I believed, I believed it through my whole life. Hope that it would guide any actions if I would ever be a victim of murder, Beth Preheim said.
This Good Friday represents a day, many believe, Jesus Christ himself became a victim of the death penalty. Just another reason why, people attending the vigil, said killing those who kill is wrong.
Thursday, February 20 2014 7:42 PM EST2014-02-21 00:42:09 GMT
Behind the glory of football there are the scars and bruises. Some visible, some not. We still have much to learn about the health risk football puts on it's players, but some of the biggest strides inMore >>
Behind the glory of football there are the scars and bruises, some visible, some not. We still have much to learn about the health risk football puts on it's players, but some of the biggest strides in research are happening on South Dakota's fields.More >>
Friday, March 7 2014 7:22 PM EST2014-03-08 00:22:40 GMT
A Yankton man was found dead in a mobile home, Friday morning and Police are calling it a homicide. It happened on the 1100 block of E. 8th Street near Peninah Street. That's on the southeast part ofMore >>
Yankton Police investigate an apparent homicide, Friday. Suspect in custody is the nephew of the deceased victim. More >>
Friday, March 7 2014 4:19 PM EST2014-03-07 21:19:12 GMT
Cattle ranchers and law enforcement in the American West are fighting a tough new battle to protect the herds -- keeping meth addicts from stealing their cows and selling them to finance their drug habit. CattleMore >>
Cattle ranchers and law enforcement in the American West are fighting a tough new battle to protect the herds -- keeping meth addicts from stealing their cows and selling them to finance their drug habit.More >>
Friday, March 7 2014 2:08 PM EST2014-03-07 19:08:50 GMT
Yankton Police are searching for a homicide suspect.The suspect is Joshua Charles Hudson, 28. He's believed to be driving a green 2002 Dodge Ram half ton truck with a red topper. The plates are South DakotaMore >>
A young man is accused of killing his uncle in Yankton early this morning.More >>
Friday, March 7 2014 11:45 AM EST2014-03-07 16:45:28 GMT
A toddler has died as a result of a two-vehicle fatal crash on Feb. 24, the South Dakota Highway Patrol said today.A one and one-half year old child, Adryan Jones, died late Wednesday, in a Sioux FallsMore >>
A toddler has died as a result of a two-vehicle fatal crash on Feb. 24, the South Dakota Highway Patrol said today.More >>
Friday, March 7 2014 10:04 AM EST2014-03-07 15:04:38 GMT
Blood clots can happen for a variety of reasons and spawn a variety of symptoms. In the past the biggest challenge has been safely clearing them out. However, in Yankton doctors are getting proficientMore >>
Blood clots can happen for a variety of reasons and spawn a variety of symptoms. In the past the biggest challenge has been safely clearing them out. However, in Yankton doctors are getting proficient at busting up blood clots.More >>