On June 9, First Love Church, along with Strawbridge United Methodist Church and First Methodist Humble, organized a community unity walk. The purpose of the event, according to its lead organizer and First Love Church Pastor Eric Lacy, was to promote unity within the local community.
“I felt God’s calling to organize a Christian walk to promote unity in our community. We want to continue the discussion within our community,” said Lacy.
The recent fallout over the killing of George Floyd was undeniably present in the background of the event, with many participants bearing shirts and signs stating, “I can’t breathe.”
A crowd of approximately 150 people met at Hirsch Memorial Park to participate in worship and prayer. To help combat the extreme temperatures, volunteers provided water for participants. Following the worship session, participants assembled behind a man bearing the Christian cross and began a slow descent down Main Street, guarded in all directions by the Humble Police Department. Many sang Christian hymns during the walk in a moving manner.
“It is time for people to realize that either we work together and improve our community, or we go our separate ways. We cannot right wrongs while severed, we have all got to come together or we will disintegrate. It is time for us to unite and sit at the fellowship table and talk about these issues to figure out what to do collectively to solve these issues within our society despite our differences,” said one walker.
The members of the community present during the event represented people of many different ethnicities and backgrounds.
“I think it’s a good example of what can happen when a community comes together in a tough time. It has been a tough year and the fact that we can all come together is very moving. It is very moving to see the diversity of the crowd coming together with city officials,” said Jason Stuebe, city manager of Humble.
When juxtaposed with some of the often-violent protests occurring nationwide in recent weeks, this walk drastically differed. The event was entirely peaceful, with a clear and resounding message of unity and collaboration between the citizen and law enforcement officer alike.
The walk ended at City Hall, where several more pastors and city officials gave remarks.
“We want to ensure that minority businesses get business contracts. We want to have constructive conversation and we want to respect the police. The city of Humble has great officers who love the Lord,” said Lacy.
Delbert Dawes, Humble chief of police, said, “So much wrong has happened, and we have a long way to go as a society. For my department, we have and will continue to strive to do our best. We are human and occasionally we will slip, but we hope to correct what we do wrong. As a department, we love people and we love God.”
During the remarks, several participants fainted due to the extreme heat and temperature. Humble police officers rushed to assist those who were affected and dispatched an ambulance.
Also among those in attendance was Donna Ullrich, former principal of Humble High School.
“This march represents an awareness for this community, we are all God’s children. We are Christians and human beings first, and then we are whatever we are. God loves us all and we all belong together," said Ullrich.
The Unity event ended after several more speeches and prayers. For those interested in viewing the event page, facebook.com/humbleunited to see photos and videos that were taken throughout the evening’s processions.