Faith-based leaders across the country grapple with two forces: COVID-19 and racism

Responding with faith

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Steve Green is the senior pastor of More Than Conquerors Faith Church in Birmingham, and said it’s okay to feel angry during this time of unrest, but if we want our nation and our world to heal, we have to remember to respect one another.

After protests in Birmingham over the police killing of George Floyd turned violent Sunday night, the same leaders who have tried to keep spirits lifted during the pandemic, are now trying to heal old wounds.

“This is not the first time that we’ve seen injustice perceived…especially in Birmingham we’ve got great history with that,” said Green.

“I would strongly encourage all of Birmingham, all of our leaders those who are waiting for justice to be served that we don’t take a step backwards, and that we learn the lessons from Dr. King, Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth taught us that we need to be patient. They that wait upon the lord shall renew their strength,” Green said.

Green said he understands the anger and frustration some are facing right now, but said chaos and destruction are not the answer.

“Violence is never an option. Many of us say that we know that there is an enemy called the devil. Well, his operation is threefold: to steal, sounds like looting, to kill, sounds like murder, and to destroy. We don’t want to be playing the devil’s game. We don’t want to be stealing, looting. We don’t want to be killing, murdering. And we certainly don’t want to be destroying the land. So, if you’re operating in those three attributes, you’re operating and playing Satan’s games.”

And while the pain of George Floyd’s death, and many others, is still fresh, Pastor Green said now is the time to lean on your faith to get through these difficult times.

“We must seek first the kingdom of God. We must acknowledge God in all our ways, and he’ll direct our path. We need the spirit of God to control us, and when we don’t lose our temper, cooler heads will prevail, and we’ll be able to do what we need to do,” Green said.

Pastor Green echoed the sentiments of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. saying people should not be judged by the color of the skin, but the content of their character, and also added they we all need to show R.E.S.P.E.C.T., which is an acronym for Respect Every Single Person Ever Created Today.

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