William T. Cox Sr., President of the Allegheny West Conference; William Miller, President of the Potomac Conference; and Dave Weigley, President of the Columbia Union Conference, release the following joint statement regarding the unrest in Charlottesville, Va.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of Heather Heyer and Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen and Trooper-Pilot Berke M. M. Bates of the Virginia State Police, who lost their lives on Saturday, August 12, during the violent uprising in Charlottesville, Va. We’re also praying for healing for all who were injured and impacted.
“As a church, we abhor evil and stand against individuals and organizations who perpetuate hatred, violence and discrimination. God calls each of us to love, to be compassionate and to show mercy to all people no matter their race or gender. We honor that call and stand in solidarity with those who seek peace and justice. We pledge to do everything in our power to end the scourge of racism, sexism and discrimination whenever and wherever we see it.
“In the spirit of unity and solidarity, we will join with our four area Seventh-day Adventist churches—Bethany, Central Hispanic, Charlottesville and Charlottesville Spanish—to pray for the victims, their families and the community. This rally will be held at the Freedom of Speech Wall, 605 East Main Street, in downtown Charlottesville on Sabbath afternoon, August 19, at 1:15 p.m., around the time a car plowed into the crowd killing Heather Heyer and injuring 19 others.
“The purpose of the rally is to demonstrate Christ’s love and bring healing to this hurting community. We invite you to join us in a season of prayer for peace at the time of the incident—in Charlottesville or wherever you may be.”
Click here to read the statement in Spanish.