Adventist Review Online | In the United Kingdom, Adventist Youth March Against Knife and Gun Crime


Churches have a key role in helping to proactively prevent crime, London official says.

n the opening months of 2019, United Kingdom Home Secretary Sajid Javid described the escalation in knife crime as a “national emergency,” with a special emphasis needed to “tackle violence among young people,” according to The Guardian. For their part in tackling the problem, Seventh-day Adventists in the United Kingdom and Ireland set aside two consecutive Saturdays (Sabbaths) as days of silent prayer, particularly in local communities being affected by gun and knife crime.

Hackney Seventh-day Adventist Church in London is just one of the churches that took part in the “rise up in prayer and take back the streets” prayer walks on May 18 and 25, 2019. On the second Sabbath, donning red clothes to symbolize the lives taken by knives and the blood shed by Christ for those lives cruelly taken, members silently walked in pairs — the silence in tribute to those sadly taken from their communities.

  • A local Seventh-day Adventist church in London partnered with community organizations to promote peaceful resolution of conflict. Local city officers also attended and supported the initiative. [Photo: Trans-European Division News]
  • The poster advertising the Adventist youth-led May 27, 2019 march against gun and knife crime in Hackney, London, United Kingdom. [Photo: Trans-European Division News]

The second day of silent prayer was followed by a much noisier peace march on bank holiday May 27, 2019. Led by members of the Hackney church, the march brought together members of the local council, including the mayor and counselors, along with community leaders and members of the public who are concerned with the rise in knife crime throughout the country. 

Adventist members of the area’s Pathfinder clubs led the march, and many members of the public opened their windows, front doors, or businesses to watch the group of young drummers making noise for all the right reasons — letting people know that the bloodshed on the streets must stop and that the lives of young people are important. ITV News London, the Hackney Gazette, and Adventist Radio London brought the march to both local and national attention. 


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