CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — A group of people gathered in Champaign’s Douglas Park Wednesday night for a night of prayer. It was part of one pastor’s decade-long goal of achieving Victory Over Violence.

Pastor Willie Comer has been hosting prayer nights for 10 years. He said it saddens him to see empty parks in July, but he knows it’s because of the violence Champaign-Urbana is experiencing.  

So, he hopes by praying with the community, they can make a difference.

“Prayer changes things, I believe that with all of my heart,” Comer said. “And I believe that if we can get the church outside of its four walls and into its community, then we can take them back. If violence is taking place on corners, street corners, then let’s take the corners back at least for a month for the Lord.”

The prayer nights will happen every Wednesday of July from 6:30 to 7:30. They also fast from 6 am to 6 pm on Wednesdays in July.

Over the next three weeks, they will be at Garden Hills Drive and Hedge Road on July 13, Beardsley Park on July 20 and then at Washington Street and Lierman Avenue in East Urbana. Comer said people should wear red so others know where to go.