At Bethel Baptist Church Sunday morning, Bishop Rudolph McKissick Jr., addressed last week’s mass shooting in a new sermon, “What am I supposed to do with this?”
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville residents are turning to their faith to comprehend and cope with a mass shooting that took place at a Dollar General last weekend. That triple homicide continues to cause pain and misery and was a topic at many church services.
At Bethel Baptist Church Sunday morning, Bishop Rudolph McKissick Jr., addressed the shooting in a new sermon series titled, “What am I supposed to do with this?”
“I’m mad as hell,” said McKissick. “But what am I supposed to do with that?”
McKissick addressed the tragic event that impacted lives throughout the community; lives that were then eclipsed by a hurricane days later.
“Then, I have to read the manifesto of a twenty-something white male who decries his hatred for Black people, knowing that he is only writing what so many are feeling,” he said. “It’s painful.”
Saturday, August 26, Angela Carr, A.J. Laguerre and Jerrald Gallion were shot and killed at a Jacksonville Dollar General by A 21-year-old self-avowed racist from Clay County.
Before the shooting, law enforcement officials say the gunman was on the campus of nearby Edward Waters University, where he was questioned by a security guard.
Law enforcement officials believe the gunman then put on his tactical gear, walked to his car, and left the campus.
McKissick continued to preach to a community of church members who are searching for security after this tragedy.
“How do you deal with your pain when you got no explanation?” he asked.
“No explanation for the racism? No explanation for the disfranchisement? No explanation for the murder?”
McKissick said in the aftermath of the overwhelming circumstances, the community needs to create a space where “the truth of our emotions” can be expressed in a healthy manner.