Members of a New Bern church gathered Friday night to remember the victims of a mass shooting in Newtown, Conn.
Police in Newtown said a gunman killed his mother at her residence then went to Sandy Hook Elementary School, where he allegedly killed 26 students and staff members and later took his own life.
Pastor Jace Cox opened the doors of Clinton Chapel AME Zion Church in New Bern for an impromptu prayer service.
"When I saw President Obama and saw the compassion as a father and world leader, it broke my heart," Pastor Cox said. "I just felt an urgency in my spirit to call my congregation together and whomever else wanted to come to be a part of the prayer."
Many of those in attendance were young children, including Jeremiah Eatmon, who struggled to make sense of the tragedy.
"I feel that it was not fair (for the shooter) to do that. I feel that the parents are going through a lot of hurt and sorrow," Eatmon said.
"If I was in that school, I would have been really scared and hurt," Brianna Brooks said. "Every day I make sure I say good bye to my grandma and my mama and my aunt, and to make sure I think about my school and I also love them."
Another student, Jalen Corbett, worried about the victims' loved ones.
"I hope they can get through all the grief and still make it through with the families," he said.
Those in attendance sang songs and prayed for the shooting victims and their families, along with survivors of the heinous crime.
- 49ers QB sits during national anthem in protest
- Man arrested in fatal stabbing of 2 nuns in Mississippi
- Italy earthquake: A country in mourning begins burying the dead
- Updated Pence: Trump is 'a CEO at work' on immigration
- A state politician voicing concerns over the Whitewater Center reopening following amoeba death