By Molly Daly
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — At historic Mother Bethel AME in Society Hill Sunday, there were prayers for the Charleston nine, forgiveness, and unity.
The church rang with music and pastor Mark Tyler’s words, words of hope and healing.
Tara Broady of Perkasie said the message of unity was particularly compelling.
“I love the message today about seeing people from the inside and being able to get past all their differences.”
The message of unity also resonated with Clyde Devlin.
“Try to understand each other, stop finding fault in everybody.” said Devlin. “People are under the impression, if you’re not this, you’re wrong. If you’re born under the canopy of God and you believe in God, it’s just like a flower garden, we’re all different colors, but it’s only one ground and earth.”‘
Denise Nelson says although the killer reportedly wanted to start a race war, the opposite is happening.
“That’s what’s encouraging to me, to see that Jews, and Christians, and Muslims, and white and black and Hispanic are coming together to say: we’re all AME.”
As she left the historic church, Emily Coakley Smith said she heard the call for forgiveness, but she can’t heed it.
“I can’t forgive.” said Smith. “I guess because I’m human. To me, only God forgives. I’m not God.”