Church Prayers After Fatal Stabbing Outside Building
Members of a Baptist church in Birmingham said prayers at the site of a fatal stabbing - just outside where they meet for worship - on Sunday
Chelmsley Wood Baptist Church were shocked on Remembrance Day (November 11) to find their building cordoned off by the police, after a local man had been found stabbed at 5am that morning. He was rushed to hospital, but pronounced dead on arrival.
He was later named as 25-year-old Lance Gregory. A post-mortem revealed he had died of a single stab wound to the chest. He had been out celebrating a birthday.
The church is in temporary accommodation while the first phase of a refurbishment programme takes place, and Lance was killed opposite the shop unit they are using.
This particular area has a high incidence of crime and is known locally as a no-go area in the evening.
Another local man has been charged with murder* and there has been a lot of tension over the incident, revealed Chelmsley Wood minister the Revd Neil Roberts.
'This has been a tragic event for all of those involved, but also for us as a community,' he said.
'To turn up for worship and be faced, literally, with a pool of blood and a police cordon brings home the importance of proclaiming and living the message of Christ in our community.'
The Baptist church, which is supported by Home Mission, has been in the area since the estate was built and runs community activities from its premises.
'It is a key part of our theology that Christ and his people should be in places like this, however difficult that may be at times,' added Neil.