HOUSTON, Texas — A Houston Police Department officer led a prayer during a walk in a community in Houston that has been hit hard by violence and other crime.
The ABC affiliate in Houston filmed the uniformed officer praying for citizens in the neighborhood.
The spontaneous prayer by the Texas police officer occurred during a walk organized in the wake of more violence in the neighborhood, according to ABC13 News in Houston. The prayer walk was attended by Mayor Sylvester Turner, the Houston Police Chief, and Pastor Calvin Miller. The walk was organized by a religious group called “1 Team 1 Fight.”
The officer took a bullhorn to pray for the community after residents prayed for the police officers who serve them. Officer Barry Curtis serves as a liaison to the clergy.
In January of this year, a 95-year-old woman was beaten to death in her home during a robbery in the Sunnyside neighborhood. The Army veteran died last week from the trauma. In February, a man was shot at a gas station in the afternoon on a Sunday, according to the ABC13 News video above. A bystander was struck by the car of a fleeing customer.
In 2013, Sunnyside was reported to be #6 in the NeighborhoodScout crime list of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the nation. It is the oldest African-American community and is located in the southern part of Houston.
Officer Curtis told Deborah Wrigley’s ABC13, “I hope it changes minds.” Curtis added. “It’s like out of the Book of Nehemiah. We’re the ones with the weapons, the people here are the ones with the tools, and the desire to improve their community. And when we team together, it makes a great partnership.”
He was reported to say, “We take spiritual ownership of areas. And when we pray and ask for God’s help, we see crime go down.”
Officer Curtis is going to keep crime statistics in the area to show what the crime stats were before and after neighbors started teaming together and praying for the community.