Local church takes stand against violence, other issues

Local church takes stand against violence, other issues
October 19
05:00 2017

People in the eastern portion of the city are getting fed up with some of the issues plaguing their section of the city.  In an effort to combat some of these issues, Christ Rescue Temple, 1500 N Dunleith Ave., held a “Dare to Care” program on Saturday, October 14 to bring awareness to the issues and plans to address them.

The idea came about from Christ Rescue Temple’s pastor, Bishop Willie Davis Jr.  He says a few weeks ago, he was inspired to speak about the issues that he was concerned about in the community.

“We see the crime that is going on in Winston-Salem, particularly in our area, the northeast and east portion of the city,” Davis said.  “So I told the church about it and wanted them to get a committee together and start working on it and put something together, which they did immediately.”

The committee reached out to other individuals in the faith community, city officials and local businesses.  Davis wanted to express that this is not a “one time event,” saying they will hold monthly gatherings to continually address these issues.

The gathering discussed issues such as homicides, gun violence, drug and alcohol abuse, prison ministries and mentoring.  Vivian Burke, mayor pro tempore and City Council member representing the Northeast Ward, and members of the Winston-Salem Police Department were a few of the speakers Saturday afternoon.

Elder Thornton Howard III along with Sharon Davis of Christ Rescue collaborated to coordinate the event.  They said they felt strongly about bringing awareness to the problems of the surrounding community.

“We just felt like something needed to be done, so we got together to see what could be done and the issues that we could address and attack,” Howard said.  “We have been meeting on a regular basis to talk about it because we want to go beyond the violence and also address the issues that affect our families.

“We wanted people to think of East Winston as an area that is growing, thriving and is willing to help one another,” he continued.  “As Maya Angelou said, ‘If you know better you do better,’ and will work to do this continually by stepping outside the walls and engage the rest of the community.”

Alexis Daniels of Safe on Seven (SOS) came out to touch on domestic violence issues.  She provided information for those who needed assistance along with stunning statistics about domestic violence in the city.  SOS assists individuals with restraining orders and referrals to other agencies.

“The main thing I wanted to convey was that domestic violence is happening and it’s happening in our community,” she said.  “We are there for people who need us because sometimes people need a push to get out of their situation.”

Capt. Christopher Lowder and Pamela Peoples Joyner of the Winston-Salem Police Department were in attendance.  They touched on the importance to improving community relations with the people of East Winston. 

“Improving community relations is a top priority for us, and it is one of the goals set for the men and women of the department to increase trust and communication and to get out and know the citizens of the neighborhoods,” Lowder said.  “Getting out in the community shows that we are committed to the neighborhoods and the communities, and it’s an honor to be here today.  I’ve been in public service for 23 years, so to be able to come out and interact with the wonderful citizens of the city is quite an honor.”

Christ Rescue Temple will have another forum and discussion on Saturday, Oct. 28, from 12-2 p.m. at the church. 

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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