Newtown interfaith community remembers Charleston shooting victims

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NEWTOWN -  There was a unified Sunday service in Newtown this weekend to honor a fellow community grieving after a tragic mass shooting. Nine different congregations from different religions came together to pray for the same thing: an end to gun violence.

"We wanted to recognize that all people are touched by that kind of violence," said Reverend Mel Kawakami, senior pastor at Newtown Methodist Church, which hosted the service.

Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America organized Newtown's interfaith community in under one week.

The members of the community who gathered there are just part of a much larger effort around the country called #RisingforCharleston.  At least eight cities participated to honor the nine people killed in the racially motivated mass shooting at Emanuel AME church last week.

"I wanted to be a part of the faith-based response to that and regardless of faith, unity is the solution to this problem," elder Richard Wilford of Enduring Life Ministries said.

It's a problem far too familiar to the Newtown community and these acts of violence affect people like Abbey Clements deeply. Clements was a second-grade teacher at Sandy Hook Elementary School, who now works for Moms Demand Action.

"The news just goes right through you," said Clements. "We know not only the horror that happened in that room, but also the road ahead for the families, for the survivors, and for the community  and our hearts just break for them."

While praying for the victims, they're hoping to turn their grief into action and they're demanding lawmakers work to stop these acts from happening in the future.

"Once again we are going to have to come together in our communities," said  Kara Baekey, head of Connecticut's chapter of Moms Demand Action. "We're going to have to use our voices to say enough is enough.