Sheriff Benny Napoleon, Detroit-area pastors to unite in prayer

Published On: Feb 28 2013 01:12:31 AM EST

Religious leaders, city officials and Detroit-area citizens will come together at Mt. Zion Baptist Church for "One Prayer, One Purpose, One City" in an effort event organizers say is meant to evoke promise and hope in the midst of the city's problems.

With violent crime and financial problems in Detroit, Sheriff Benny N. Napoleon, J.D. says he has convened area clergy to address the widespread distress felt around the city.

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"People are afraid, especially our children and seniors. They're being victimized where they live, work, attend school and even where they worship-no one feels safe," said Napoleon. "Law enforcement is doing what it can with the resources it has to alleviate the problem, but this level of violence transcends what anyone would consider normal."

City officials presented data in January that showed Detroit's homicide rate at levels recorded when the city had nearly 250,000 more residents, according to Census data in 2000. With high levels, Napoleon says he is committed to helping citizens regain a sense of control.

"I want us to come together in a spirit of unity to show we are of one accord to bring forth positive change," said Napoleon.

Dozens of clergy in the Detroit area said they plan to attend Thursday's event, which is open to the public. The event begins at 6 pm and takes place at Mt. Zion Baptist Church, located at 3600 Van Dyke in Detroit.

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