MEDFORD (CBS) — Dozens came together at a peace vigil for the Charleston shooting victims held at a small historic Baptist church in West Medford on Saturday.

West Medford Baptist Church on Boston Avenue was filled to capacity for the interfaith vigil, as the religious community reached out to the nine victims killed inside a South Carolina church. The groups that participated in the vigil were Grace Episcopal Church, Medford Interfaith Clergy, Mystic Valley National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the West Medford Baptist Church.

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“Today, we’re hoping to bring our community together for a time of prayer, of mourning, of healing…and also as a call for action for how we need to be together as one people in a time that’s so torn apart like this,” Rev. Noah Evans told WBZ-TV’s Jim Smith.

It’s an effort to shine a light against the hatred that led to this week’s carnage, and with the prayers come hard questions.

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“When will the hating end when will the peace prevail when will we recognize killing is the most heinous sin of humanity,” Mayor Michael McGlynn told the parishioners.

For many, the healing will take a long time, but diverse gatherings like the vigil serve as a jumping off point.

“We have to come together and we have to talk about racism…people dont wanna talk about racism, and i mean its very clear that its alive and well people dont wanna talk about if we talk about it maybe things will get better,” vigil attendee Gwen Blackburn told WBZ.

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WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Karyn Regal reports: