SHREVEPORT, La. -- After a violent week in Shreveport, Sunday brought a call for solidarity and change in the city. In developing "The Funeral is Cancelled," Pastor Lawrence Levy said it's up to the people who aren't committing the violence to take charge.
"The Funeral is Cancelled" is basically a depiction of so many different things that we deal with on a day-to-day basis in our country that I don't think we need to or have to deal with, if we learned how to come together and put it aside," said Levy, a pastor with Freedom World Ministries in Lafayette.
The program includes people dressed as KKK members, bullet-riddled vehicles, shooting "victims" covered in fake blood, and others portraying people battle drug and alcohol addiction. Levy said he uses the powerful imagery (which caught the attention of several passing cars) to show people (especially young people) what the violence really looks like on the streets.
Sunday's event was presented at Western Hills Baptist Church in partnership with Shreveport Volunteer Network and Love Shreveport-Bossier. "The Funeral is Cancelled" was planned before at least 10 shootings in Shreveport over the past week left six people dead and five injured.
Related story: Violent week in Shreveport leaves 6 dead, 5 injured
"We're all hurting and feel like our city's feeling hopeless right now," said Keith Bryant, co-founder of the Shreveport Volunteer Network. "What we're doing is we're bringing hope. We all need to come together and try to figure out how to slow this down."
"I don't think that this is a black issue. I don't think that this is a white issue. I think this is a people's issue," said Levy. "We all, in some way or another, are responsible for some of the things that we see in our communities every day."
In addition to the presentation, members of the Shreveport Volunteer Network offered warm meals and bottled water to the community. Levy says he's already been invited back to Shreveport to present "The Funeral is Cancelled" on a bigger scale.