As we all watch the headlines, whether in regard to peaceful protests or intense rioting, with furrowed brows and tired minds, one East Texas man wants to gather for another reason--to pray.

He's a Director Of Gospel Village at The Mentoring Alliance and pastor at Fredonia Baptist Church in Kilgore, and he invites the public to join him this Friday, June 5 from 6 until 7 p.m. for 'Prayer on the Square' in downtown Tyler. Kilton O. McCracken, Sr. shared with me today that he believes it's "relationships that break racism."

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In the midst of our country's turmoil, confusion, and pain, what a comfort to know there are people seeking to bring peace and hope into even the most heartbreaking situations. It's safe to say we are in that type of situation at this moment.

Varying and quite nuanced points of view swirl all around us on social media and even in conversations with friends and family every day. Even among those who see things mostly similarly, there is much misunderstanding and subsequent hurt feelings. Many hearts, and this nation, are in great need of healing.

For many, healing and a sense of a higher purpose and connection comes through prayer--particularly in a community setting. That is the aim of McCracken and others. On what will the prayer be focused? McCracken says it's about racial unity, immigration, justice, and strengthening those relationships that do so much to shorten the distance between people--no matter their differences.

In addition to the prayer, there will be "worship" with the help of a powerful choir of voices. If you'd like to connect with Kilton McCracken or learn more about the event and what to expect, connect with the Facebook page here.