The Nolensville Police Department is partnering with Ebenezer United Methodist Church, the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office and the greater faith community for this Saturday’s Faith and Blue event to foster fellowship and community bonds.
The free event will take place on Oct. 9, from 1-3 p.m. and will give community members an opportunity to meet and engage with law enforcement officials on the town and county level.
The community as whole, as well as all of Nolensville's various faith groups, are invited to take part in the meet-and-greet stye event which will also feature refreshments.
"This is an opportunity for some community outreach and for community mending and community building," Nolensville Police Chief Roddy Parker said. "If we know each other then we communicate with each other better."
According to faithandblue.org, the national program is an extension of One Congregation One Precinct initiative (OneCOP), a program MovementForward, Inc., a "bridge-building, solutions-focused human and civil rights organization" based in Atlanta.
The National Faith and Blue weekend has national, state and regional law enforcement partnerships across the U.S., and began "to facilitate safer, stronger, more just and unified communities by directly enabling local partnerships among law enforcement professionals, residents, businesses and community groups through the connections of local faith-based organizations."
The initiative's stated goal is "to re-calibrate police-community relations through solutions-focused, in-person, socially distanced and/or virtual activities that are organized jointly by faith-based or other community groups and law enforcement agencies."
Parker said that as Nolensville's population grows and becomes more diverse, his department is working hard to connect with new and long-term residents.
"I think it's very important to explore everything that we can to reach out to people and let them know that law enforcement here is public service. We're your friends and your neighbors and we're here to serve you," Parker said.
"The Town of Nolensville is growing rapidly and people are moving in with new businesses and the Town is expanding," Ebenezer UMC pastor Rev. James Scruggs said in an email. "Law enforcement collaborate with local faith-based organizations to strengthen positive connections that will enable us to break-down divides and increase familiarity. Hosting this activity is geared toward fostering unity. As the Pastor of Ebenezer Unity Methodist Church, I value a good working relationship and fellowship with community and Town of Nolensville officials. This Faith and Blue collaborate is a powerful and innovative community engagement resource."
Ebenezer UMC is located at 101 King Street in Franklin, and more information about the National Faith and Blue weekend can be found here.