Billy Graham Rapid Response Team Responds to Minneapolis in Light of George Floyd’s Death

Billy Graham Rapid Response Team Responds to Minneapolis in Light of George Floyd’s Death

Chaplains from the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team are responding to Minneapolis in the wake of violent protests over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed, 46-year-old black man who died in police custody.

Police detained Floyd on Monday, after a grocery store employee allegedly received a counterfeit $20 bill from Floyd. Mahmoud Abumayyaleh, co-owner of the store, told CNN that he saw no sign that Floyd resisted arrest. Yet video shows police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes as Floyd gasps for air and says he can’t breathe.

In the video, bystanders can be heard asking Chauvin to let up so Floyd can breathe, and Floyd becomes unresponsive as Chauvin keeps his knee on Floyd’s neck. According to news reports, EMTs say that when they arrived, Floyd was unresponsive and pulseless. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

“This makes me sick to my stomach,” Franklin Graham said on Facebook. “What took place Monday on a Minneapolis street, by the Minneapolis Police Department, should deeply concern each and every American. It’s inexcusable. To watch a police officer kill an unarmed black man—with no concern on his face, his hand in his pocket, indifferent to the bystanders begging for something to be done to help the man—is so disturbing. He and the other officers on the scene refused to listen and refused to respond. I hope they have deep regret and remorse for their actions. Police are not the judge and jury. These officers will have to stand before God and the authorities on this earth for what they have done.

“Thankfully, this is not the story of every police department. Most men and women who work in law enforcement are tremendous servants who put their lives on the line every day to protect their communities. We need to pray that God will give them wisdom and grace to face the storms that they encounter.

“I hope every police department will learn from this,” Franklin continued, “and make the changes needed to never let something like this happen again. Pray for George Floyd’s family, loved ones and friends, that God will put His loving arms around them and comfort them during this tragedy.”

Three chaplains from the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team will be on-site today, with nine more following on Friday.

“The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team is sending crisis-trained chaplains to Minneapolis, a place that was home to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association for 50 years, to support a community in crisis,” said RRT international director Jack Munday. “Our chaplains have specialized training and experience and are coming from across the United States to share God’s hope. We are praying for the entire community, and along with supporting those who are hurting, our chaplains will encourage local churches and pastors to be involved and provide prayer support.”


Above: Police and protesters stand outside the 3rd Police Precinct station in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on Tuesday, May 26, as thousands marched in protest of George Floyd’s death.

Photo: Richard Tsong-Taatarii/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS/Tribune Content Agency LLC/Alamy Stock Photo

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