Prayer On The 9

May 21, 2016 marked the 6th annual anti-violence rally put together by Pastor Hannah and New Life Covenant Southeast Church. With violence increasing in the community, especially this year alone, it’s necessary that we come together and at least pray for ourselves, our children and each other.

People wore red clothing which symbolized the bloodshed in the street from gun violence. Attendees included the Pastor himself, Mayor Rahm Emmanuel, St. Sabina’s leader Father Pfleger and community aldermen. Community organizations, members and Chicago residents joined each other in what was called The Step Out demonstration: A moment of silence and prayer where they laid down in the streets, some holding pictures of murder victims, in remembrance of the lives lost.

Being a member of New Life Southeast, I had the opportunity of documenting the first Prayer Walk of 2010. Over the past 6 years, I’ve realized even more how our communities are being destroyed by mental illness, crime, violence and the lack of resources. However, my personal opinion is, what good do we do by ignoring, moving away and complaining about those problems? It’s time that we stop being only for oneself and help each other who is in need, in whatever aspect. We do more together than separate.

The togetherness of the community I witnessed was overwhelming. I had some moments where I was no longer a photographer, but a resident of Grand Crossing/Chatham, a parent of a 10-year-old who has to live in this society and a person who knows how much times have change and wonder what can I personally can do to help.

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