NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A Middle Tennessee man is trying to bring awareness to the staggering statistics of domestic violence in a unique way.
Ordained pastor David Ashley isn’t just carrying the weight of a wooden cross.
“I will carry that cross 50 miles,” Ashley said.
He’s carrying the weight of the burden domestic violence victims bear each day. On average, more than 10 million people are physically abused by an intimate partner in the united states in a year.
“It gives me goose bumps right now just thinking about being that voice for them,” Ashley said. “My ministry is more to the streets.”
This “Pastor of Pump” taking to North Mount Juliet Road this weekend to raise awareness.
His cross adorned with 3,400 names of victims and black ribbons for domestic violence homicides in the state.
“I want to take this cross and pull it across Wilson County for these victims,” Ashley said. “Showing them someone cares, someone hears them. We hear them.”
This is Ashley’s second year for the effort, but it’s coming with new challenges.
“Monday morning, I got my MRI result back. I have a torn meniscus and a damaged ACL that will require surgery,” Ashley said. “But I’m not going to stop. I’m not going to just say no.”
Ashley said he’ll do as much as he can Saturday and Sunday – walking between Courtney’s Restaurant and Pleasant Grove.
“I’m going to do it til I can’t do it anymore,” Ashley said.
Ashley’s Crosswalk is also a fundraiser for his Cross-Strength Ministry to build a resource center for domestic violence victims.
He said he wants to build it in Wilson County to include counseling and training, a prison re-entry program, group therapy and domestic violence court mandated program.