Austin Pride may have finished up, but Instagram users are still talking about it thanks to a heartfelt post from a Texas church member.
According to Pink News, Jen Hatmarker, a religious writer who has faced backlash for her support of LGBTQ people and her opposition to President Donald Trump, organized a free hug “giveaway.” This “giveaway” saw church goers attend the Pride parade and offered hugs to anyone who wanted them.
She then created an Instagram post about the event, shared several photos of these now famous huggers, and shared an endearing message about the moment.
“Our arms were never empty. We ‘happy hugged’ a ton of folks, but dozens of times, I’d spot someone in the parade look our way, squint at our shirts and posters, and RACE into our arms. These were the dear hearts who said:”
‘I miss this.’
‘My mom doesn’t love me anymore.’
‘My Dad hasn’t spoken to me in three years.’
‘Please just one more hug.’
“You can only imagine what ‘Pastor Hugs’ did to folks. So we told them over and over that they were impossibly loved and needed and precious. And we hugged until our arms fell off. This is what we are doing here, what we are here for.”
There are plenty of wonderful moments that happen at Pride parades across the globe, but its good to focus on a specific sweet one like this every now and then.