CHICAGO (CBS) — The Rev. Michael Pfleger renewed his calls Wednesday night for Gov. JB Pritzker to declare a state of emergency surrounding Chicago’s gun violence epidemic.

“If we can call a state of emergency because of flooding, don’t tell me we can’t calla a state of emergency because of violence,” Pfleger said.

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Pfleger, of St. Sabina Church, was joined by the Rev. Ira Acree of Greater St. John Bible Church and other faith leaders to host a special prayer vigil in the Austin neighborhood.

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They prayed to honor the many victims of recent Chicago mass shootings.

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Pfleger also announced that on Wednesday, St. Sabina will begin a cash-for-guns program to help get weapons off the street.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff