A tragic event unfolded last week in Cedartown when two local police officers were shot on duty, one of them fatally. With a manhunt underway, local law enforcement reached out to Kresge UMC to ask if the church parking lot could be used as a staging area.
Once the staging area was set, a member went to the building to unlock the doors and welcome law enforcement and first responders to use restrooms or access the facility for anything else they needed.
Kresge pastor, Rev. Ed Dickens, also came to the church to help spread the word to leaders onsite that the church was open.
"Many from our congregation were making plans and offering to bring meals if the event went into the evening," said Rev. Dickens.
Rev. Dickens took time to pray in the sanctuary, then went outside to introduce himself to the police chaplain.
"I prayed with him," said Dickinson. "He was spiritually exhausted from the work he had been doing. After our prayer together, he went back to work praying with groups of officers."
The suspect was arrested a few hours later by Polk County Police.
Tonight, Monday, October 2, Kresge will hold a community prayer vigil, open to all.
"I pray for healing, forgiveness, strength, and peace," said Rev. Dickinson. "I pray that we would have eyes to see those in need, to intercept those about to commit evil, that we love them into belonging and believing, long before they find themselves fighting police. I pray that we, the Church of Jesus Christ love all in our community the way Jesus loves."