Roanoke church uses music to breakdown racial walls

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ROANOKE (WSLS10) -  It's been nearly two weeks since nine people were murdered at Mother Emanuel AME church in Charleston, South Carolina. As people across the country continue to mourn, some are coming together to cross color lines and improve race relations.

The christian musical group "Touchpoint" hopes to build better race relations in Roanoke churches. On Sunday, they sang at "Jesus is Lord Assembly of Love" church, a predominantly African American church in the Star City.

Dorothy Dooley has attended the church  for 16 years. She said she is glad to see Touchpoint, a white christian musical group, leading worship in a largely African American congregation to breakdown racial walls.

"It seems that we have a kindred fellowship and we just get along and I think it's a wonderful thing and more people in the community need to come together this way," Dooley said.

Touchpoint singer Marlane Knuppel said after what happened in Charleston, now is the time to build better race relations, and one way is in the church.

"We believe so strongly that our community can come together and go across those racial lines and worship together because we are all one in the lord and and we want to build that unity in our community," Knuppel said.

Pastor Steven Norman delivered Sunday's sermon. His message to the congregation is that people need to come together, despite differences, in order to form better relations.

Norman said that's happening in his church --- two groups forming a bond.

"We found common ground and that's we like that common ground where we can worship together, we may not dot every I and cross every T but we have the main issue in common and that's our lord and savior Jesus Christ," Norman said.

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