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Churches against suicide

The increase in the numbers of young people taking their own lives in north and west Belfast this year has sparked a response from the local church.

CU@the Cross is a campaign against suicide and its causes which will conclude on November 6 with two special events.

The first will be a gathering between the security gates in Northumberland Street at 12 noon.

“Many people and churches across the city are planning to attend this event to express solidarity with all who have suffered tragic loss that has impacted and devastated families and communities on both sides of the wall,” said Pastor Jack McKee, of the organising committee.

The second event will be at 7.30pm at New Life City Church, Northumberland Street, with special guest John Edwards from Dublin who will share an amazing story from hopelessness to hope and who now lives to help others.

“The church needs to do more than bury the victims of suicide; it needs to do its utmost to help prevent it,” said Pastor Jack.

“While there will be a short service between the gates at 12 noon, this is not about the promotion of religion; it is not an ecumenical service; it is not about the promotion of any individual church; and it is definitely not political or sectarian.

“But is quite simply the church saying to everyone, “There is a Better Way that brings hope and purpose”.

“We will take the opportunity to pray for all who have been affected and to pray for the future of all our children and young people.”

The events are open to everyone.

Belfast Telegraph