WATCH LIVE: Christians Hold Sunday Service On National Mall Ahead of Protests; Harry Jackson Says, ‘Racism Will Prevail Except Where the Church has Risen’

On Saturday, Dec. 2, hundreds of people gathered to march and pray in downtown Charlottesville, Va. Local and national faith leaders from diverse racial and denominational backgrounds stated that prayer, Christian witness and activism go hand-in-hand.
On Saturday, Dec. 2, hundreds of people gathered to march and pray in downtown Charlottesville, Va. Local and national faith leaders from diverse racial and denominational backgrounds stated that prayer, Christian witness and activism go hand-in-hand.

In Washington D.C. and Charlottesville, VA, churches are uniting to stand for peace and unity one year after dueling protests in Charlottesville turned violent, leaving one woman dead and dozens injured.

Members of the United Methodist Church are hosting a Sunday service on the National Mall while only a few blocks away demonstrators gather under the opposing banners of ‘United Against Hate’ and ‘Unite the Right 2.’

Rev. Dr. Stacey Cole Wilson, who helped organize the National Mall event dubbed ‘United to Love’, told CBN News the service will be “the exercise of Martin Luther King Jr.’s observation that the church is called to be the conscience of a nation. In that spirit, we call people to come together and speak the truth in love.” About 3,000 people are expected to attend the event. Wilson said even non-Christians are invited.

Watch the event below (11 AM to 3 PM EST)

Bishop Harry Jackson, pastor of Hope Christian Church in Beltsville, MD, led a prayer march in Charlottesville in the aftermath of last year’s tragedy. He spoke about what his church is planning for the anniversary of that event.

“We are going to worship Jesus and then intercede for the peace of Charlottesville and also for the peace of the nation,” he said.

CBN reports that Jackson will be leading “three services as marchers move from point to point, with the faith community making a special point to pray over the areas of the greatest division last year.”

Jackson concluded, “Jesus said in the last days nation will rise up against nation, ethnic group against ethnic group. That’s going to continue to happen. Racial hatred will happen and will be played out everywhere – except where the church has risen strong as salt and light.”

–Joshua James