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Knightstown community gathers to pray for man who filed lawsuit to remove cross from tree

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Picture from prayer service in Knightstown on December 18, 2016

KNIGHTSTOWN, Ind. – It`s a story that`s gained national attention—Knightstown residents are taking a stand to try and keep a cross on the town`s Christmas tree.

Yesterday, some residents got together for a prayer and healing event. They tell us the controversy over the cross brought neighbors together and inspired them to help the man at the center of this debate.

“We had people coming together that probably hadn`t ever talked to each other before. It`s such a wonderful experience to have,” Kevin Richey, organizer of the prayer service, told FOX59.

The cross atop the Christmas tree was removed after the ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of town resident Joe Tompkins.

The suit claimed the religious symbol should not be displayed on public property.

But in a surprising move, those who want the cross back are rallying support and praying for Tompkins and helping his father who is battling cancer.

“He fired us up to stand up for our faith, but also to act out in our faith,” said Curt Hunt, pastor at Knightstown United Methodist Church.

The town council is currently negotiating with the ACLU and trying to come up with a holiday display to include a cross in the future.