Bishop Barber urges action in Selma at Bloody Sunday anniversary
WVUA 23 News Student Reporter Giselle Hood
Selma remembered Bloody Sunday on March 5 by welcoming Bishop William J. Barber II to speak. Barber gave the keynote sermon at Brown Chapel AME Church, the same historic church where activists began their march to Montgomery 58 years ago.
“Shrinking back is not an option,” Barber said. “We must stand up and push forward.”
Barber is president of the political activist group Repairers of the Breach. He announced during the sermon that the Rebuilding Broken Places organization will donate $25,000 toward relief efforts in Selma and another $5,000 to Brown Chapel.
“First thing we got to do, to deal with this, is recognize that all these issues are not about Democrat and Republican, left versus right, but right versus wrong,” Barber said.
He shared a message of hope and urged the congregation to fight against social justice and inequities within their community.
“They were willing to lay down their lives. They were willing to stand for truth and faith and justice and freedom,” Barber said. “There’s blood on our right to vote. There’s blood on every opportunity that you have.”
The sermon comes after Barber and other activists urged President Joe Biden to come to Selma with more than just words. Residents are calling for voter rights and economic investment in low income areas.
“It’s not just merely talking about what people did back then,” Barber said. “The question is what must we do now?”