Lifestyle & Human Interest

Former Gang Members and Drug Addicts Gather To Pray for Police Officers in Middle of Street


It was August 2018 when a group of young adults from Stockton, California, went out into the neighborhood with the intent of sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The group members were a part of Victory Outreach Church of Stockton, an organization with a goal to bring hope to hurting community members by sharing how their own lives were changed by the gospel message.

According to their Facebook page, Victory Outreach Stockton was established in 1985 with a mission of evangelizing to the local community, which often means strategically sending groups out onto the streets to bring hope to the hopeless.

“We reach out to drug addicts, convicts, gang members, The hurting, the lost, the abused, any and all people that our hurting,” Karlos Valazquez from Victory Outreach wrote in an email to Liftable, a section of The Western Journal.

“We believe that there is hope through Christ for everyone.”

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On an Instagram post, Victory Outreach explained that their group did not get very far before the police were called.

A large group made up of former gang members and drug addicts must have looked troublesome to someone, who may have assumed the group was up to no good.

“A strategic squad was sent out tonight to hit the streets and spread three gospel, and the enemy tried to shut things down by having the Cops called, We almost thought they were gonna shut us down from spreading Gospel,” the post explained.

But once the officers arrived, things took a beautiful turn.

“They stopped us and then the young man that is praying for the officers explained what we were doing, the officers listened and asked if we would shut it down within 20 mins and we agreed,” Valazquez told Liftable.

“The young man asked the officers if they mind if He prayed for them. The officers said they did not mind and so he began to pray for them. One of our guys saw this happening and began to record.”

The group members prayed God’s protection over the police officers and their families as they worked tirelessly to keep the peace in Stockton.

They prayed that the officer’s families would be spared from receiving devastating news and that the officers would understand their value and worth in the eyes of God.

“Keep using them to model peace, model justice, and to model love,” one of the young men prayed.

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The group thanked God for sending strong and compassionate police officers into the Stockton community, acknowledging the important work the law enforcers live out day after day.

“It was an amazing moment, afterward the officers thanked us and They let us continue and they went on their way,” Valazquez told Liftable.

The Victory Outreach team was thrilled with the outcome of the day’s events, giving all credit to God.

“But God turned things around and they loved our message and everything that was being spoken. They even let us pray for them!!! Praise God!!! We ain’t stopping!!!” the group wrote.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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