Hundreds in the East gather in support of HB2 to pray for unity

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Hundreds gathered in Greenville and New Bern Thursday for a prayer vigil in hopes of unifying the state. It was part of a statewide effort to support lawmakers and the governor for passing House Bill 2, which overturned Charlotte’s transgender ordinance.

Organizers said the event wasn’t about politics, but rather about peace.

“There is no hatred. We’re here to pray,” one of them told 9 On Your Side.

District 8 Rep. Susan Martin (R) said it has been a tough time for lawmakers, as they have dealt with statewide, and national, push back for the bill.

“These are difficult times, and our nation is at a crossroad,” Martin said. “Those of us with strong faith and conviction, we do need to be praying continually for our country.”

Joe Shakour, pastor at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Wilson, said they weren’t just praying for those in support of HB2, but also those against it.

“I pray that they would just read the bill, see what it says, and I think when they read it, they’ll be surprised that it’s pretty much common sense,” he said.

Those in support of HB2 said it had nothing to do with discrimination, but rather protecting women and children.

Amy Weber, a mother of four, said lawmakers must remain vigilant despite a small minority protesting.

“It’s a loud percent, and we as Christians, should be louder,” Weber said.

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