MASON CITY, Iowa - It's been nearly a month since a gunman burst into a Pittsburgh synagogue and opened fire, killing 11 people.
On Sunday afternoon, community and faith groups continue to come together at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Mason City for an event called "Love Over Fear - A response to hate."
People of different faiths and beliefs started discussions, played music and offered other expressions against hatred.
Alan Steckman is with the Mason City Jewish congregation. Last year, the Adas Israel synagogue received two explicit anti-semitic voice messages, and got together with Pastor Chuck Kelsey to gather community members to express and encourage love. With the response they received last year, they wanted to build on that to respond toward hate crimes.
"There's so many hate crimes. There's political hate, there's racial hate, there's anti-semitism, there's hate for the Muslim community. Let's talk about hate."
Kelsey believes there's an atmosphere that is allowing hatred, but more people are aware of it. He hopes that can others can become more aware as well.
"If there are more people who are aware of it, like tonight, can gather together to at least express a little bit their concern, and to draw together to change the ethos of the community, then some amazing things can happen."
While this was a conversation, Steckman hopes that this can turn into a spark of change.
"I'm hoping that our response today grows, that other people that came here will spread the word and it will reduce the amount of response to hate."
Around 50 people attended the event, but thanks to a Facebook Live video, there were 74 views in addition.