FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT)- This discussion was part of the 33rd annual Unity Service in Fort Wayne put together by the Associated Churches of Fort Wayne and Allen County.
WFFT Local News was there as the public listened to how the church plays a role in change.
Sometimes change is fast or slow, but the Associated Churches of Fort Wayne and Allen County gathered the community and a panel of six pastors in hopes of creating some dialogue on race as a starting point.
"If there's one thing that sticks out, is that we can do this. We can make a difference and come together as blacks, whites, in the name of Christ. We don't have to be separated by ethnicity and we have to get past that,"John Suciu, Senior Pastor of Wallen Baptist Church, said.
Their focus was racial reconciliation- learning helpful healing strategies to address racial tensions that affect the city. The moderator of the event, Iric Headley, said it's a step in the right direction.
"I think tonight is definitely the point that we start the work we need to start. And support the work that has already been started, and continue to do some amazing work in Fort Wayne," Headley said.
The event attracted new residents who also wanted to learn more about the city.
"I'm not from around here. I'm from Detroit, but there's a whole bunch of things going on. Police brutality, racism, it's a whole lot of things going on with the government, and the school systems. I just want it to be better," J'ontae Smith said.
J'onte Smith is new to the city and finds comfort in knowing that this is something people are working toward in Fort Wayne.
"Hearing all these people speak about what no one likes to look at, it really means a lot to me," Smith added.