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GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WOOD) — Murders and suicides involving guns seem to be increasing across the state and country. One church in Grand Haven has made it their mission to make people realize the full scope of the issue.

“When there are significant justice issues at stake that cut to the core of what we believe as Christians we try to be strong advocates for that,” said Father Jared Cramer, the rector of St. John’s Episcopal Church.

On the church’s front lawn are 124 tombstones, which is the average number of people in the United States who were killed every day in 2020.

Each tombstone represents a friend, family or neighbor in the state who were killed by gun violence this year.

“These aren’t just stats on a sheet of paper or names you read in the news, these are real human beings whose lives have been tragically cut short,” Cramer said. “People have seen this as an honest and authentic articulation of a problem.”

The tombstones have been on display for people to walk through since the beginning of October.

The church held a small performance arts protest to make people aware of how prevalent gun violence is and how the community must rally together to end the senseless killings.

“It’s really needless for this many people to die as a result of gun violence every day. There’s no reason this should be continuing,” Cramer added.

This is part of an initiative from the church’s Gun Violence Prevention Ministry. It was started about a year ago.

“We want people to be aware of that and passionate about and it contact their legislatures who can do something about it,” ministry leader Nancy Collins said.

Collins hopes the deep reflection lasts more than just a single moment. She wants this issues to become everyone’s prirority.

“Common sense gun safety legislation, that’s what we are hoping for,” she said. “If legislators aren’t going to adopt common sense gun legislation, if people just take common sense precautions with their weapons.”

The church encourages the public to walk through the display which will remain in place until Nov. 3.