COLUMBUS – Local residents gathered at a local outreach center in prayer, after a recent shooting that occurred just two blocks away.
First United Methodist Church Senior Pastor Cindi Stewart said Annette Alt reached out to her about organizing a prayer night after the shooting that left Columbus Police Sergeant Brad Wangler hospitalized.
“Looking online, and we could see our Outreach Center in the background of the [news] pictures. It kind of startled our hearts a little bit. It stirred our minds, and it reminded us that this is a community that is fairly peaceful. This is the first time in what? 30 years that their has been any gun violence, and so it’s something that touched our hearts, and is something that we do want to address and we want to pray for,” said Stewart.
Alt is a Columbus native and local business owner, who says the ultimate goal of holding a Neighborhood Prayer Service, like the one Monday evening, is to help promote a safe community and pray for those serving the community everyday.
“This is my hometown. This doesn’t happen here. So let’s make this the town that I grew up with. I have adult children, but I have grandchildren, and we just need to be the change.” Arlt went on to say, “We need to be the ones to take control for the situations that are happening in our communities. To be aware and to maintain the integrity of what my upbringing was in Columbus.”
Attendees listened and sang various songs, as well as took time for silent individual prayer, as well as group prayer.