Clergy trying to curb violence

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PINE BLUFF, Ark — Recent homicides in Pine Bluff spark clergy across the city to talk ways to curb the violence.

A handful of members of the Faith Community Coalition met at Family Church Pine Bluff campus Thursday night.

Organizers are trying to untie the more than 300 churches across the city to work together to stop violence.

“We need each other in that one component of driving the community, the gospel through the streets of Pine Bluff,” said Family Church Pastor Roosevelt Brown.

Brown says they are putting action behind these meeting, but face challenges with not having enough people working together.

One program he pointed to was leaving a cross, then praying where someone was murdered.

“They need to know that their churches need them to pray with them,” Pastor Brown added.

The 10 Point Plan, an anti-violence initiative that was introduced last year, was also brought up. The plan has been used in other cities to successfully bring down crime rates.Pastor Jesse Turner is helping lead that charge, but says funding has been a big hurdle.

“When are we going to step up, where are you, because the blood is always crying up from the ground and we need to be as pastors, we need to be unified on this issue,” Pastor Turner said. “This is a spiritual war. It’s not just people killing people, minds have to be changed.”

Besides crime prevention, the coalition is also working on initiatives for economic development and education.

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