(Cleveland) - Hundreds of people were baptized at Edgewater Beach in an event conducted by The Word Church.

Pastor R.A. Vernon says he wanted to do something to Cleveland's spiritual dynamic with the city dealing with 3 serial killer cases this year.

Vernon explained that he hoped to prevent further violence by touching and changing lives through a mass baptism and a renewal of the faith. About 10 years ago The Word Church conducted a similar ceremony in Lake Erie.

The church provided its own security, and had the help of park rangers, private police officers and lifeguards in assisting the crowd.

Pastor R.A. Vernon

Many of those who were baptized told Newsradio WTAM 1100 that it was an invigorating, uplifting experience. Some said they just wanted to release their burdens and get closer to God.

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(Photos by Ken Robinson/WTAM)

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