According to Micah Latter, who lives on Gay Street in New York City, someone has been chaining a massive wooden cross to various fences around her neighborhood since Good Friday. It's fairly safe to say that whoever is responsible is trying to make a statement, which is odd considering that the street was named in 1833, when the word 'gay' had a much different meaning.
Latter explains on Instagram that the cross first showed up chained and locked to her apartment gate, and that the owner kept moving it around every few days. So this weekend, Latter's neighborhood banded together to make sure whoever is moving the cross gets a surprise when they next pay a visit.
They turned it into a "love cross" by painting it in the rainbow colors of the pride flag.
Story goes like this: 9 days ago an enormous cross showed up chained and locked to my apt gate. The mysterious owner of the cross has the key and moves it around my street (which happens to be Gay St). Confused by the mute point this stranger was trying to make with a cross on Gay street, my neighbors & I decided to turn the cross into a Love Cross. Strangers, family, friends, dogs, neighbors & random tourist all stopped to paint, drink champagne in the street and celebrate the cross that symbolizes love in the neighborhood. Plot twist: we added our own lock to the chained cross and superglued both key holes. #GayStreet #westvillage #LoveCross 🗝❤️✌🏾
The result was pretty spectacular.
Latter explained her reasoning for painting the cross to Popsugar:
"As a Christian, the cross is a sign of love, peace, and hope and it was clear the mysterious owner of the cross was not sharing those same values. It was unsettling that the owner's intentions were not sincere."
A friend suggested to Latter that she should celebrate the cross rather than letting it get to her. So on Saturday, she texted equally frustrated neighbors with her plan: "We're rainbow painting the cross. I'll bring paint and Champagne for anyone that can make it."
Latter estimates that more than 50 people showed up, and it wasn't just neighbors.
"My favorite part of the event were locals sharing the experience with strangers. We had two tourists from Brazil stay for the entire painting; we had kids skateboarding by stop to paint; we had many straight couples, gay couples, and a transgender couple all sit, paint, talk, and stand in the street sharing stories. It was a magical NYC moment."
Latter also added her own locks, so that the owner can't remove the cross. "It belongs to the street now," Latter told Popsugar.