Star Hill AME to hold special service tonight to pray about S.C. church killings

DOVER — Star Hill A.M.E. church will hold a prayer service tonight in light of the shootings that took the lives of nine people, including the pastor, at a prayer meeting inside a historic black church in downtown Charleston, South Carolina, Wednesday night.

The service will begin at 6 p.m. at 357 Voshells Mill-Star Hill Road in Dover.

It’s open to the public.

The Rev. Rita Mishoe Paige, pastor at Star Hill A.M.E. Church, urges people to pray for justice for the lives lost in South Carolina. (Submitted)

The Rev. Rita Mishoe Paige, pastor at Star Hill A.M.E. Church, urges people to pray for justice for the lives lost in South Carolina. (Submitted)

The shootings took place inside the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, near the heart of Charleston’s tourist district.

Dylann Storm Roof, 21, the man suspected of the shootings was arrested Thursday morning.

He stayed for nearly an hour inside the church Wednesday night before shooting six females and three males at a prayer meeting, Police Chief Greg Mullen said.

The Rev. Rita Mishoe Paige of Star Hill A.M.E. Church said prayer is needed for everyone through these difficult times.

“I think prayer is the answer,” Ms. Paige said. “I’m grateful that there haven’t been any violent acts (in reaction), as people have the right to be upset.

“But people have to have righteous anger and I think the right thing for us to do is pray about it and hope that justice will be served for the lives that were lost.”

Ms. Paige hopes the incident will encourage people to fight for tougher gun legislation laws.

“I hope this will make us fight harder,” she said. “There needs to stricter gun laws so incidents like these won’t continue to happen.”

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