Vigil remembers victims of Charleston church shooting - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Vigil remembers victims of Charleston church shooting

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - Clouds cover the sky outside Bethlehem Wiley United Methodist Church but that doesn't keep light from shining through the stained glass inside as folks gather inside. 

It's been one week since a gunman opened fire inside Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. The nine victim's families and community have responded with love.

“We don't close our doors just because tragedy strikes us,” Saints Peter and Paul Basilica Pastor David Carter said.

Carter says it's an example for Christians across the nation of how to forgive.

“This church, that has been so effected by an act of hatred, has responded with love. That love is the answer, that forgiveness and mercy are trying to overcome hatred with true love,” he added.

Tears fell from many during Wednesday's vigil as each of the nine victims were remembered.

For Renee Woods, what happened more than 400 miles away could have happened anywhere.

“This happened in Charleston, but it very well could have been Chattanooga,” she said.

Even though a week has passed, other still struggle to wrap their minds around what happened.

“No one anticipates someone to come in with that mindset to think, you're not going to leave, you're not going to go back home,” Woods said, “we're here to pray because I for sure would want someone to pray for me if I were in the same situation.”

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