SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - A church group is putting its faith in prayer to help curb violence in Shreveport-Bossier and elsewhere. It's all part of an effort by the church In the Beginning Outreach Ministries.
That prayer vigil and rally took place on this Friday night in the Cedar Grove neighborhood. Pastor Sharen Johnson told us it was just one way to let people know they can fight back - together.
"It's just, 'put the guns down! Put 'em down, timeout you know.' Out of everything we should get a(n) understanding. You understand what I'm saying? So, start thinking before you act," said Pastor Johnson.
The pastor and members of her church cite two recent cases in particular that motivated them to take action.
First, they pointed to the deadly shooting back in April that claimed the life of 30-year-old Randy Taylor in the Cedar Grove neighborhood.
Crystal Efferson/Boyfriend killed: "It's just sad. It's just sad that people go through this and have to deal with this kind of violence," explained Crystal Efferson, Taylor's longtime girlfriend.
Second, there's the case of 22-year-old Deandre Brown, shot and killed on Interstate 20 earlier this week in Shreveport.
Pastor Sharon Johnson says prayer is at the very core of what their effort is all about.
"Prayer is the key. It says pray without ceasing. Even if it was no violence taking place, we still need to be praying. And then another thing is, how can God hear us if nobody's praying. Everybody's talking about it but you got to be about it," added Johnson.
The pastor told us they had several dozen people turn out for their vigil and rally. They hope to hold a similar event in the near future to push back against violence and murder in Shreveport.