Pastor and parishioners took to the streets with a clear message, “we’re here, and we can help”
ROCHESTER, N.Y. – A church on the west side believes the answer to curbing the violence lies not only in the work of the police, but also in persistent presence of the faithful. They took to the streets with a clear message, “we’re here, and we can help.”
“God’s Temple City of Deliverance” is another organization, stepping up to take back control of the community.
Pastor Troy Wallace says, more organizations are creating resources and knocking on doors. That’s the only way to fight the violence.
“We know mental health is a great factor to what’s going on today,” Wallace said.
For 14 years, Pastor Wallace has worked in the mental health field.
“You’re frustrated, you think that violence and a gun will solve the problem well, we’re here to tell you there’s a different way.”
Those frustrations, Wallace says, stem from various issues.
“Such as poverty, such as, every time you look around, there is an issue in our school system. And it doesn’t matter, just walking the street at night time, people are getting killed in broad daylight.”
Wallace and his team, walked the streets of the city’s west side. Talking to people, sharing resources the church offers, like youth groups, counseling, and more. At the same time, they had the chance to hear from neighbors.
“You know what the problem is? People are scared,” one neighbor said.
“We try to, but the streets are bad right now,” we heard another neighbor say.
Wallace says people could listen to advice all day long, but what matters is the physical presence.
“The community needs to know we’re here, I always say, people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.”