Members of the Rochester community react to the Buffalo shooting

ROCHESTER, NY – After the mass shooting at a Tops supermarket in Buffalo on Saturday, people across the state are rallying to help.

One such person is Clay Harris, the founder and president of Uniting and Healing Through Hope of Monroe County.

He spent the weekend grilling ribs and chicken outside the Hope Christian Fellowship Church

It’s more than just a weekend barbecue, as Harris used it as a way to bring people together to promote peace.

“[We want to] shine a bright light on the violence that is engulfing not only our city, but New York State,” Harris said.

It was at this stoppage of the violent event that he first heard news of the mass shooting in Buffalo.

“I was so hurt because it’s been like this for so long and we just have to stop,” Harris said. “We have to stop killing each other”

People from all over Rochester came to have a meal, many standing side by side and sharing their stories.

Harris hopes this will make them realize that we are not that different from each other.

“We are all human beings,” Harris said. “I don’t care if you’re black, white, brown [or] purple; we all need to love one another and come together to make our city, county, state and nation a better place to live.

While a barbecue won’t solve all of the violence-related issues, for Harris, he hopes it’s at least the first step in a long streak to come.

About Michael C. Lovelace

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