Our hearts are broken as we mourn the tragic deaths in Charleston, SC

Our hearts are broken as we mourn the tragic deaths in Charleston, SC


Previous Bishops

6/19/2015

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Grace and peace in the name of our risen Christ!

Our hearts are broken as we mourn the tragic deaths of nine members of the Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church of Charleston, South Carolina, including the Reverend Clementa Pinckney, who was a dedicated pastor and a state senator. This cowardly, brutal act, committed as Christians gathered for worship and prayer, is a violation of all that we hold sacred. We cry out, “How long, Oh Lord?” as yet again innocent persons are the victims of racist gun violence.

Surely, Jesus weeps with us at this atrocity. Can there ever be an end to racially motivated massacres? The outrageous violation of the holy space of our sister Pan Methodist congregation is an outrage to all people of faith and a threat to all houses of worship. Most of all, racial ethnic congregations are confronted with the possibility of being targeted.

We must continue to speak against the systemic, insidious evil of racism and its unimaginable consequences. This tragedy is but one instance of many layers of injustice heaped upon persons who by the color of their skin are marginalized and discriminated against. In this time we must search our own hearts for any ways in which we by commission or omission perpetuate this evil.

I call upon the churches of the New York Annual Conference to hold the families of these victims in prayer and to renew our commitment to work for justice for all persons.

In Christ’s love,

Bishop Jane Allen Middleton