Pastor Andy Oliver of Allendale United Methodist Church knew immediately upon watching the video showing the fatal encounter between Minneapolis Police officers and George Floyd on Monday that he had to respond. Since he couldn’t preach his message to his church, he put it on the church’s street-side marquee. (Trevor Pettiford/Spectrum Bay News 9)PUBLIC SAFETY
Allendale Methodist Church Pastor Speaks Out on George Floyd Death in Minneapolis
The disturbing footage of George Floyd literally being restrained to death by Minneapolis Police has sparked outrage in many who’ve seen it, including the pastor of a St. Petersburg area church who made his feelings regarding what he saw in the video clear for all to see by posting it on the sign outside his church.
“It was the most vile evil murder I’ve every seen and I knew immediately that we had to respond,” said Allendale United Methodist Church pastor Andy Oliver.
Oliver responded in the only way he knew how — to preach about it to the masses.
Since the pandemic doesn’t allow him to bring the masses into his church, he took his message to the street, calling the police action a lyching on the church’s marquee.
“This wasn’t separate from the history of white supremacy that has lived in our country since its very beginning,” Oliver said.
Although the officers involved in the George Floyd case have all been fired, city and county officials in Minneapolis vow to do what’s right.
For Oliver, doing what’s right is speaking out. He and his church have faced dangerous situations before, but he says being silent is not an option.
“The bottom line is if I stay silent for my safety or for this church’s safety it means that we’re putting a life at risk of someone who’s black and brown in this community,” Oliver said.