Lynchburg leaders pray for youth change

Church leaders held a prayer and press conference Monday

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Members of Diamond Hill Baptist Church and other community leaders are using the power of prayer after a Heritage High School Student was hospitalized during a fight.

Adults in Lynchburg are trying to break through to a younger generation.

“Giving our young people the best opportunities to grow into their future selves,” Rev. Dr. Owen Cardwell of Diamond Hill Baptist said.

Their efforts spurred further after a fight landed a heritage high school student in the hospital last week.

Church leaders made it clear that they stand with the schools, and want to help as much as they can.

“We come here today not to be against anybody but to be for what is right,” pastor and former LCS School Board chair Dr. James Coleman said.

The fight became a political battle, with Vice Mayor Chris Faraldi calling for Superintendent Crystal Edward’s resignation after the incident, on social media.

“When we hear they were trying to force the superintendent to resign because she wasn’t in town - we are behind her, regardless of what they’re trying to do playing politics,” Lynchburg NAACP Vice President Robert Flood said.

Their main message: the schools can’t fix everything by themselves.

“Our schools cannot tackle this by themselves. ABCs are important, but we also need money to support all of the services necessary to help our 15-year-olds,” Coleman said.

Leaders say nothing will change unless everyone makes an effort.

About the Author

Abbie Coleman officially joined the WSLS 10 News team in January 2023.