ROANOKE, Va. – The sounds of praise and prayer echoed through downtown Roanoke Sunday evening.
Hundreds of people pulled up chairs and participated in a worship service on Market Square. The revival, organized by local minister Steve Henderson, took place on a temporary stage on Market Street.
“It’s so important that our city hears the voice of peace, hears the voice of Jesus coming in the midst of chaos,” Henderson said. “We’re bringing togetherness; that’s our mission.”
This was the second Sunday in a row Henderson’s event occupied Market Square. Some people, including Jessica McClure, attended both Sunday services.
“We want to know that the city of Roanoke wants to gather and worship Jesus appropriately,” McClure said. “I love worship and I love the freedom to worship.”
The event featured six pastors from different denominations reading their own prayers for peace.
“The biggest influence that we can have on the world today is unity,” said Pastor Terry Nester of Riverland Road Baptist Church.
“Let us leave this event today saying ‘I have to be better,’” added Pastor Michael Anderson of New Generation Church. “Stop pointing fingers, but instead ask, ‘Father, what must I do?‘”
Henderson hopes the event inspires Roanokers to become more compassionate going forward.
“They’ll hear the message that we’re giving, they’ll take it to heart, they’ll take the oneness and joy we want to share with them.”
The worship services will return to Market Square every Sunday this month.