Statement on Derek Chauvin Murder Conviction
Most of all, may today’s verdict affirming that Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd enable Mr. Floyd’s family and friends to receive some measure of comfort and peace. I invite all in the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles to keep them in our prayers as well as the people of Minneapolis and all who have been victims of racism and oppression.
After Mr. Floyd’s murder in May 2020, tens of millions all over the United States raised their voices in outrage because of this and more instances of unjust police violence against Black people and other people of color. Millions said as one: “Black Lives Matter.” The road to reform will be longer than we might wish, as Daunte Wright’s April 11 killing in Brooklyn Center made so heartbreakingly clear. Yet both in the media and in the courtroom, many representatives of law enforcement deplored former officer Chauvin’s actions. May their witness signal a turning point for our country as we devise models of law enforcement rooted in wholeness, healing, safety, and justice for all.
In our diocese, the Bishop’s Commission on Gospel Justice and Community Safety has taken as its mission to articulate a Christ-centered vision of community safety, assess the relationship between residents and law enforcement in our neighborhoods in all six counties, and advocate for reform locally, regionally, and nationally. Please keep the commission in your prayers tonight during our fifth monthly meeting, and our first with Sister Patricia Sarah Terry as chair, including by using the prayer Presiding Bishop Michael Curry commended to the church this afternoon:
O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Yours in Christ’s love and Eastertide hope,
The Rt. Rev. John Harvey Taylor
VII Bishop of Los Angeles