Easter Celebration on Chicago’s Daley Plaza

Thomas More Society Co-Sponsors 9 Day Prayer Vigil, Sunrise Service and Giant Jesus/Cross Display

On Thursday
evening, April 13, 2017, at 7 p.m. (Central), a giant 19-foot high purple-draped cross will be erected in Chicago’s Daley Plaza as the initial event of an Easter season observance that includes a nine day prayer vigil, an Easter morning sunrise service and the display of an oversized image of the resurrected Jesus Christ (known as the Divine Mercy).

The “Prayer in the Public Square” vigil starts at 12:01 am on Good Friday, April 14th. Commencing on this day during which Christians worldwide mark the suffering and death of Jesus, the event will run around the clock through Sunday, April 23.

The Thomas More Society, a Chicago-based national public interest law firm, has joined with private citizens to co-sponsor the “Jesus in Daley Plaza” display, consisting of the huge cross and the 10-foot tall image of the Divine Mercy.

Easter Sunday, April 16, an interdenominational music and prayer service will commence at 6:10 a.m. (Central) on the plaza, at 50 West Washington, between Clark and Dearborn, in Chicago’s downtown loop. During this celebration of Christ’s resurrection, the drapery on the cross will be changed to white, traditionally symbolizing renewed life.


  • Thursday, April 13, 2017, 7 p.m. (Central)
    “Jesus in Daley Plaza” begins with the raising of a giant 19-foot high cross draped in purple linen and a 10-foot tall image of the resurrected Jesus Christ, titled the “Divine Mercy.”
  • Friday, April 14, 2017, 12 a.m. (Central)  through Sunday, April 23, 2017
    A 9 day prayer vigil “Prayer in the Public Square” is in progress, coordinated by DivineMercy33.org
  • Sunday, April 16, 2017, 6:10 a.m. (Central)
    An Interdenominational Easter Sunday Sunrise service coincides with the changing of the drapery on the cross to traditional white, symbolizing renewed life.


  • All events occur at Chicago’s downtown Daley Plaza, 50 West Washington, between Clark and Dearborn. MAP: bit.ly/108z677


  • All are welcome to observe and participate in these events, led by Christian pastors and representatives of various denominations.
  • This celebration is co-sponsored by the Thomas More Society, a national not-for-profit law firm committed to privately-funded expressions of faith in traditional public forums.
  • The large Easter cross and Divine Mercy displays were designed and built by the Karl and Nancy Fritz family.

“The Easter cross and the image of the risen Jesus Christ represent a constitutionally protected expression of faith – the observance of the resurrection – by private citizens in a public forum,” explained Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society. “These Easter displays are privately funded and sponsored, bereft of any government aid or endorsement, and therefore are clothed and armored with the full protection of the First Amendment of our U.S. Constitution.”

The Thomas More Society regularly assists groups and individuals across the country, defending their First Amendment right to express religious beliefs freely and openly in traditional public forums. They are called upon to serve in this capacity year round, but especially during the Easter and Christmas holidays.