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Miss. Clergy Turn to Prayer After Conn. Shooting

By Daniel Cherry | Published 17 Dec 2012 07:57pm | comments
Mississippi clergy in Jackson are praying for schools in the state and across the country. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports, the pastors want to help residents cope with the recent Connecticut shooting.
 
About two dozen religious leaders came together to pray in the Jackson Public Schools boardroom yesterday. James Shoulder was among the group. He's pastor of Rising Sun Missionary Baptist Church in Jackson. 
 
"It's got to take constant and continued prayer in our city. Praying for our school system. It could have been Jackson Public Schools. So we've got to pray for not only our school system, but all school systems."
 
The nature of the Newtown shooting which left 26 dead last week at an elementary school, including 20 young children, unnerved many residents in Mississippi and across the nation. Bishop Ronnie Crudup is senior pastor of New Horizon Church in Jackson. He saw how the events shook members of his congregation.
 
"Speak to our people to give them some comfort too because we understood there is a lot of fear. I had parents that last Friday went to the schools to pick their children up. This incident happened in Connecticut, but in Jackson Mississippi they went to pick their children up. That tells you there's a lot of fear."
 
And during fearful times, many residents will turn to the clergy for reassurance. Crudup says he'll be there, but he believes things will never be the same after such a tragedy.
 
"It just speaks to the fact that we've got a lot of foundational things that we need to deal with. And I think in America sometimes we're not susceptible to these things, that these things happen in other places, but they don't happen with us. And I think that is shattered."
 
Clergy members and citizens will hold similar prayer meetings and candlelight vigils across the state throughout the week. Daniel Cherry...MPB News.

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