Cleveland pastors open churches to promote peace after Brelo verdict

Cleveland pastors open churches to promote peace after Brelo verdict

All eyes are on Cleveland as the city moves closer to a verdict in Officer Michael Brelo's trial, which is why local pastors are banding together to promote peace. 

When the

comes down and the

wraps up, will protesters be calm or violent?

Bishop Eugene Ward, from the

, wants Cleveland to remember two simple words: peaceful protest.

"We need you to be peaceful. We need you to stand with us, and show us, and walk with us, and share with us that Cleveland is a city that can come together and we can be strong as one," said Ward.

The group of pastors wants to create at least two new centers in area churches to help teach residents ways to protest peacefully, new life skills and job training.

"We know we can't fix this overnight. We know it's not just the voice of the faith-based community, but it takes partnerships with government, corporations, etc. These things are in place, we just hope that we have officials who will put policies in place to join us to encourage people to take proactive steps," said Bishop Tony Minor, of the Community of Faith Assembly.

Pastor Aaron Phillips, with the Surehouse Baptist Church, adds he stands next to the Rice family in asking why the investigation into the 12-year-old's shooting death has taken five months. Still, he wants to remind Clevelanders that they can obtain results without breaking windows. 

"Just because we are calling for peace, doesn't mean that we are not asking for justice," said Phillips.

The ministers are going door to door speaking with young people in hopes of reminding everyone to protest peacefully.

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