DC Church Raises New Black Lives Matter Sign After Suspected Hate Crime

Members of the Proud Boys were captured on video tearing down and burning Black Lives Matter signs at two historic Black churches during a December 12 rally held in support of Donald Trump.   

Signs at the historic Asbury United Methodist Church and Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church were destroyed in the violence of the rally that left nine people injured, including two police officers. 

The destruction “was reminiscent of cross burnings,” to Rev. Ianther Mills, Asbury’s senior pastor, told NBC News in the wake of the rally.  

Asbury has plans to raise a new sign in front of their church once again. On Thursday (December 17) morning, Bishop Latrelle Easterling and other church leaders will hold a prayer service to re-hang the sign, according to a report by The Hill

“We call upon all to join us in prayer for our community, church, and the people who are responsible for this hateful behavior. We believe this is a wakeup call for all to be more vigilant and committed to anti-racism and building a beloved community, and we invite you to join us. Our congregation will continue to stand steadfast –– ‘we will not be moved.” Rev. Mills said in a Facebook post. 

Asbury was founded in 1836 and is the oldest Black church located in its original site. 

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser made a statement posted to Twitter, acknowledging the church’s resilience.

Metropolitan’s senior pastor, William H. Lamar IV said his church would also be replacing their sign in an opinion article published by The Washington Post entitled, “My church will replace our Black Lives Matter sign. Will America replace its racist myth?”

Metropolitan was the site of orator and abolitionist Frederick Douglass’ funeral in 1895. 

Photo: Getty Images

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