ORT WAYNE, .Ind. (WANE) – Fort Wayne UNITED teamed up with local churches Sunday to spark discussion about homicide. It was called My Brother’s Keeper Sunday. Churches throughout the area all preached the same message and showed a video from Fort Wayne UNITED.
Wallen Baptist was one of those churches. “I think it’s a great thing that some churches in suburbia are trying to come to grips with this but our friends in the city have been talking about it for years,” Pastor John Suciu said.
Suciu was glad to be a part of it but had strong words about how long it took. “For us to be involved in this just in the last two to three years, I know we get patted on the back, but we’re kind of ashamed of that to be honest with you.”
The message was to bring the community together to address violence and combat the homicide issue together. Suciu said that’s long overdue for them. “We should have been here a long time ago. Our neighors of color have been crying out for years and I think we too often said that’s your problem and not ours. We’re not satisfied with that and we’re sad about that and we’re going to make a difference her forward.”
Leaders with UNITED said it was a good start but there’s a lot more to do. “For us to transition the thinking of homicide being a black issue to being a community issue we really have to get the message to populations and cultures that are not impacted by homicide,” Iric Headley said.
“Many communities are not impacted by homicides at any level so a lot of communities think that it’s a black issue but we understand that people are just not concerned with stuff they aren’t impacted by typically. So this is our way of bringing in people who really care but have maybe never had a vehicle to show that they care, or how to get engaged, how to get involved,” he said.
Wallen Baptist is ready, looking ahead to change. “We’ve not done as good as job as that in the past as we should and we want to do better.”
Moving forward, they hope to continue My Brother’s Keeper on some Sundays and even offer help to families of homicide victims by having members make meals for them.
There is a meeting Thursday to make more formal plans for the future.
You can view the video by watching Wallen Baptist’s live stream of the Sunday service here.
Churches involved include: Blackhawk MinistriesHoly Cross Lutheran Church
Hope Community Church
Lifeway Bible Fellowship
New Covenant Worship Center
Pathway Community Church
Pilgrim Baptist Church of Fort Wayne
Trinity English Lutheran Church
Wallen Baptist Church
New Zion Tabernacle
Latter Rain Ministries
Living World of God