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Official Statement - Board of Bishops of The A.M.E.Z. Church regarding the killing of Tyre Nichols


We find ourselves once again agonizing and lamenting the murder of another black life by police violence. While every act of violence is painful, when it comes at the hands of those who are sworn to protect and to serve, it is all the more evil. Our moral consciousness and our shared humanity demand that we never become numb to such devaluing of human life.

Tyre Nichols name is added to the incomprehensibly long list of those who’ve suffered public lynchings. Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others, are incontrovertible evidence of America’s deep fear, devaluing, and even loathing, of black and brown bodies. The fact that this most recent fatal assault came at the hands of five black police officers sharpens the pain while proving the depth and breath of the systemic culture that refuses to see the Image of GOD in Black lives.

Another mother weeps, another father mourns, another community is outraged, and yet not one of us believes this will be the last time; however this perpetual assault on black lives must be continually confronted with every fiber of our being until it does end. Our fervent prayers are lifted as we also protest. We lament as we also demand that our political leaders legislate. Congress must pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. We also support Attorney Benjamin Crump’s call for the passage of “Tyre’s Law” to enforce accountability for police to intervene when they witness unlawful practices.

So, yes we pray for the family of Tyre Nichols. We pray for the Memphis community and for our nation. We pray for Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis, a life-long member of the AME Zion Church, who has acted swiftly, courageously, and with appropriate measures to ensure accountability and transparency. Her rapid response, compassion, and integrity must become a model for law enforcement agencies nationwide.

Bishop Dennis V. Proctor, President of the Board of Bishops

Bishop Kenneth Monroe, Senior Bishop Bishop Darryl B. Starnes, Sr.

Bishop Mildred B. Hines, (Deceased) Bishop W. Darin Moore Bishop Michael A. Frencher, Sr.

Bishop George D. Crenshaw

Bishop Hilliard Dogbe

Bishop Uduak Effiong Bishop Brian R. Thompson, Sr. Bishop Eric Leake Bishop Joseph Johnson, Retired Bishop Marshall H. Strickland, Retired Bishop Nathaniel Jarrett, Jr., Retired Bishop George W.C. Walker, Sr., Retired

Bishop Samuel Chuka Ekemam, Sr., Retired

Bishop Warren Matthew Brown, Retired

Bishop George Edward Battle, Jr., Retired