They belong to God, not to a gang

We each have a part in healing gang violence. It's time to get started.

Hearing a loud scream, I turned to my left to see a fellow teenager running toward me with a long knife. Noticing that his eyes were looking past me, I turned and saw another teenager, who was aiming his shotgun at him. I yelled to him not to shoot. But the shotgun fired, and the teenager with the knife fell backward, fatally wounded.

Minutes prior to this incident, the sharp end of one of those long knives had been pressed against my neck. I had twice escaped death that afternoon almost twenty years ago. I did not grow up in a ghetto, and I did not belong to a gang, but the public school I went to had its share of gang violence.

Gang activity still touches my life today through the weekly news reports of teenage boys killing one another, as well as innocent bystanders. In spite of what I sometimes feel when reading about the latest victims, I know that prayer has the power to heal crime and social dysfunctions. I find encouragement in a passage from Science and Health by Mrs. Eddy. Referring to conflicting forces and the ultimate destruction of evil, she writes: "During this final conflict, wicked minds will endeavor to find means by which to accomplish more evil; but those who discern Christian Science will hold crime in check. They will aid in the ejection of error. They will maintain law and order, and cheerfully await the certainty of ultimate perfection."

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Do you need more courage?
September 7, 1992

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