June 2, 2020
Nearly 300 attend policing and race relations dialogue
Recording available on conference Facebook page

If you missed the Eastern PA Conference’s “ Fight for Floyd: Where do we go from here? ” discussion on Zoom Monday, June 1, 6:30 to 8:30 PM, the recording can be viewed on the conference’s  Facebook page  ( https://www.facebook.com/epaumc/ ).

The Urban Commission offered the two-hour dialogue, with comments by guest participants and also breakout groups, as “an urgent response to current racial violence and injustice in law enforcement.” Nearly 300 people participated. Guests speakers included:

  • Sheriff Rochelle Bilal, Sheriff of the City and County of Philadelphia
  • Paula Peebles, PA State Chair, National Action Network
  • Dr. De Lacy D. Davis, Consultant and Educator in Community Policing
  • Larry Krasner, District Attorney of Philadelphia
  • Rev. Gregory Holston, Philadelphia District Attorney's Office and Pastor (and former executive director of POWER)
  • Rev. Ronald Bell, Pastor of Camphor Memorial United Methodist Church, St. Paul. Minnesota

With the focus on racism and policing, speakers and participants addressed two main questions: what have they observed or experienced in police interactions and policies, particularly related to race, injustice and violence; and what changes and action steps would they recommend to resolve the current crisis in policing and race relations.

The Rev. William Brawner, conference Urban Ministries Coordinator, and pastor of two Philadelphia churches, hosted the discussion. He organized the Zoom meeting in just a few days last week, with promotional help from the conference’s NEWSpirit Communications Office and other partners. 

NOTE:  Also see UM News’ new article. “ United Methodists preach, protest and decry racism ” about United Methodists around the nation calling for an end to police brutality and participating in peaceful protests in support of Black Lives Matter. The Rev. Jason Perkowski, pastor of Faith and Oregon Community UMCs in the Lancaster/Lititz area, is featured in the story. He shared on Facebook his experiences and observations while offering a pastoral presence at a May 31 protest rally in Lancaster that drew over 200 people. Perkowski was maced by a police officer while trying to prevent a conflict.  Read his account .
Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church
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