Council of Bishop Statement – Violence in Charlottesville, VA

Statement RE:  Violence in Charlottesville, Virginia
August 12, 2017

The Council of Bishops of the African Methodist Episcopal Church condemns the violence that exploded in Charlottesville, Virginia. The “Unite the Right” march was sponsored by white supremacists, white nationalists, and the Ku Klux Klan to protest the removal of a statue of General Robert E. Lee. It was responded to by counter protestors. 

The result was a face-off between the two groups marked with punching, kicking, water bottle hurling, racial taunting and even the deployment of chemical sprays. A car plowed into a group of peaceful protesters killing one woman and injuring about 19 others. The driver, James Alex Fields is being held on charges including second degree-murder. A helicopter monitoring the rally later crashed killing two Virginia State Troopers.

There are those who argue that white nationalists have the right to free speech, and in a democracy, we support their right. But what was on display before the nation yesterday was more than free speech. It was an unruly event designed to intimidate and provoke violence. 

In a word, what happened yesterday was a hate crime and domestic terrorism. It was demonic and does not represent what the United States claims it stands for.

We are also disappointed with the response of President Donald Trump. Let us be clear, this is not a partisan issue, this is a matter of failed leadership. President Trump while condemning hatred and violence, claimed it was on “many sides”, but it wasn’t. This violence was initiated by the white supremacist. We have heard President Trump specifically call out Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Senator Mitch McConnell and come down hard on others, but he did not explicitly condemn white nationalist, supremacist or the Ku Klux Klan. It must be noted that hate crimes have increased since President Trump’s campaign and inauguration. 

The Council of Bishops calls upon President Trump at a scheduled Monday press availability, to categorically denounce white supremacist, nationalist and the Ku Klux Klan that threatened to divide our nation. The Council wants to make it clear that he does not want or seeks their support. This would help unite and assure the nation that our president, embraces all the citizens of the United States.

The African Methodist Episcopal Church reaffirms our opposition to hate crimes, racism and anti–Semitism, and calls upon the nation, particularly our national leadership to condemn racism and hatred. 

Hate never wins. It never has and it never will. 

Bishop McKinley Young, Senior Bishop

Bishop Clement W. Fugh, President, Council Of Bishops

Bishop Frank Madison Reid III, Ecumenical & Urban Affairs

Message from President Valerie Bell, Connectional Lay President!

“Onward to Greater Works”
“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth…Oh magnify the Lord with me, Let us exalt His name together.” (Psalm 34: 1,3).

To the Bishops and Supervisors of the Church
To the 35th Biennial Session of the Connectional Lay Organization

Praise God!  The election is over, and I thank you for electing me to serve as the 12th President of this body.

I wish to thank Bishop James Levert Davis, my Supervisor, Mother Arelis Bevers Davis, and the entire constituency of the Second Episcopal District, especially the Second Episcopal District Lay Organization. I received your unanimous endorsement in February 2017, and the support has never wavered.  I am also grateful to my husband Donald, my family and loyal supporters throughout the Connectional Church who walked with and encouraged me.

My Brothers and Sisters who share in the ministry of the Lay Organization, we have a Great work to do.  I campaigned on a simple platform :

  1. Redirect our focus to Evangelism and Discipleship, if souls are not saved, nothing is saved.
  2. Return to our mission of teaching and training to better equip our Zion to focus on Evangelism and Discipleship
  3. Rebuilding the team necessary for this assignment.  The team of youth and young adults, the team of Clergy and Laity together and the inclusion of Episcopal District Presidents, all Episcopal District Presidents 1-20, because we are a Global Church.

This election reflects a mandate for immediate change, initially in these areas, and later in others in our organization. Jesus said in John 14:12,  “If you believe in me and the works I am doing, then you will be able to do GREATER WORKS.”

Please join me on this journey, “Onward to Greater Works.”
Valerie Gary Bell
President, Connectional Lay Organization
clopresident535@gmail.com

Valerie Bell President Campaign Attire and Agenda

Matthew Douglas <valeriebellforclopresident@yahoo.com>
‎Aug‎ ‎03 at ‎7‎:‎24‎ ‎PM
Greetings,
On behalf of the campaign to elect Valerie Bell CLO President, we want to thank you for your support and encouragement along this journey to the presidency for our candidate! We are excited about the 35th Biennial Session taking place in Columbus, but we are sitting in anticipation of how the Lord will move in the election and prayerful for a favorable outcome for our candidate.
Since the election is on the 1st official day of the Biennial, our candidate and the campaign will have to use the time leading up to the election wisely.  You have already received a document in referencing the 4 times that have been set aside for prayer. In this email you will find the attire that the campaign is asking volunteers and the district to wear on Sunday evening and on Monday leading up to the election. IN addition to the information in regards to the attire you will see the campaign agenda. During the times that are highlighted in blue, we are asking for volunteers to help pass out material, greet biennial delegates, walk with our candidate, etc.
Attire:
Saturday – White tops, denim bottoms and a Bell Campaign button
Sunday Afternoon and evening- Silver and blue or Blue bottoms and white tops and a campaign button
Monday- 2nd District Polo shirts, women- white bottoms and men- khakis. We will not be able to wear campaign buttons in the hall where the Biennial will convene.  
Agenda:
Time
Activity
Location
Saturday, August 5, 2017
 
 
2 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Registration for Biennial starts
Franklin Foyer
 
 
 
Sunday, August 6, 2017
 
 
8 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Local Church Worship Services
 
10 a.m. Service (After Morning service)
Campaign Reception at St.Paul AMEC, Columbus
 
 
 
4 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Candidates Forum
Union Ballroom
 
 
 
7:30 p.m.
Welcome and Reception
Regency Ballroom
 
Hosted by the 3rd Episcopal District Lay Organization, Mr. Mark E. Mayo Sr., President
 
Towards the end of the reception
Passing out Bell Candy at the end of the 3rd District Reception
 
10 p.m. – Midnight
Canidate Belling visiting Episcopal District Lay Organizations who will be having a meeting
 
 
Time
Activity
Location
Monday, August 7, 2017
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
12:30 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Lunch (on your own)
 
Before Afternoon Session
Prayer for the canidate and election
 
2:15 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Business II
Battelle Grand
 
ELECTION OF BIENNIAL OFFICERS
 
 
Honorable Patricia Mayberry.
 
 
Chair, Election Commission
 
7:30 p.m.
SERVICE of the WORD AND SACRAMENT
Battelle Grand
10 p.m. – Midnight
Celebration
Franklin A
 
 
 
 
If you have any questions you can reply to this email address or you can reach out to the Campaign Manager: Matthew Douglas at wclopresident@gmail.com or by phone/text at 301-648-1659