GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Serious questions about racism are being raised among residents in the wake of our Nation's most recent shootings.
A heated discussion held at LifeQuest Ministries during a vigil Friday gave city residents the chance to pray and voice their frustrations about racism, hatred, and hopelessness. A discussion Nathaniel Moody, pastor at Brown Hutchinson Ministry says would still be silent if it wasn't for the social media uproar on this weeks deadly shootings in Minnesota and Louisiana.
"1968 is today, the only thing that’s changed is the technology," said Pastor Moody. "We are still doing the same thing that we did in the 60’s, we’re still fighting the same fight. It just gets camouflaged from time to time."
The vigil was led by the Grand Rapids Association of Pastors. The pastor at LifeQuest, Jerry Bishop, said it's time for our Nation to wake up and come together in the fight against racism.
"I’m still a relatively young man but I’ve never seen so much national violence aside from the brutality of the civil rights march," said Pastor Bishop.
Pastor Bishop calling GRPD's effort to double up officers during patrol in the wake of this week's tragedies is a knee jerk reaction made in fear.
"We doubled up our patrol, that’s an act of aggression not an act of compassion," said Pastor Bishop. "We responded in a knee jerk reaction as if we are afraid of the audience we serve."
Mayor Rosalyn Bliss and Police Chief Dave Rahinsky were in attendance, listening to the handful of residents who chose to speak to the congregation of people.
"Do you see the injustice going on?" asked Pastor Moody. "Are we serving the same god or what? If we don’t change our way of thinking towards one another and deal with the hatred and sin, or even the repentance of a Nation, then this country is doomed."