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Faith Groups Gather In Kansas City, Kansas, To Promote Peace Amidst Rising Violence

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Cody Newill
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KCUR
More than 100 people gathered to pray, sing and show unity in Kansas City, Kansas, on Saturday. The rally at Adrion Roberson Athletic Field was held in response to drive-by shootings and homicides in the area.

More than 100 people met at the Adrion Roberson Athletic Field off North 9th Street and Parallel Parkway in Kansas City, Kansas, for a community healing and prayer event Saturday.

The metro area has seen at least 16 children killed over the last year, many in drive-by shootings. Minister LaRon Thompson said it was simply time to speak out against the violence.

"It seems like there's a homicide in our community at least every week," Thompson said. "Families are suffering from the loss of their loved ones, and [churches] should be there to console them."

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Credit Cody Newill / KCUR
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KCUR
Members of St. Peter Christian Methodist Episcopal Church sang at the event.

Destiny Bible Fellowship Community Church founder Adrion Roberson, the namesake of the athletic field, helped organize the event. He said he wants to foster a greater sense of community through faith-based events.

"There's just been an insensitivity to life in our community," Roberson said. "The stakeholders in the community, the grandmothers, the school district, the Unified Government, we have to learn how to get them all engaged and learning how to intervene [in violent situations]."

Preachers from at least half a dozen churches spoke at the event alongside local pastor Raquel Lara, who translated their words for Spanish-speaking members of the group. Roberson says faith leaders will continue to hold rallies and events in the community to help prevent violent crimes.

Cody Newill is a general assignment reporter for KCUR. You can reach him on Twitter @CodyNewill or you can send him an email at cody@kcur.org.

 

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