Pastor of Sutherland Springs Church Forgives Shooter, Encourages Others to Do the Same
Pastor Frank Pomeroy says he forgives the shooter who killed almost half of his congregation, including his 14-year-old daughter Annabelle Pomeroy, in last week’s massacre in Sutherland Springs, Texas.
In his sermon yesterday to more than 700 people, Pomeroy stressed the need to forgive and choose life. “This past weekend our country was attacked, our state was attacked, our church was attacked,” he told the crowd under a large white tent. “We celebrate and remember the veterans who fought and died so that we can have freedom in this country. But last weekend, men, women and children also fought and died for the freedom we have here this morning. We have the freedom to proclaim Christ. Folks, we have the freedom to choose, and rather than choose darkness as one young man did that day, I say we choose life.”
One parishioner from San Antonio called the service “forgiving and loving.” “I think that you do have to make choices,” said Thomas Lloyd Archer. “And people coming here are making the right choice to forgive and to recognize our lone limitations and our own sin. And our own need for redemption and help.”
The First Baptist Church sanctuary was transformed into a memorial. Over the week, volunteers removed the carpeting and furnishings and painted the building white inside and out. Twenty-six chairs were set up inside, each marked with names of the victims. Red roses were propped up on each seat. One chair held a pink rose for the unborn child killed.
Pomeroy said Sunday that the memorial would be open to remind people that the victims lived for Christ. “That building will be open so that everyone who walks in there will know that the people who died lived for their Lord and Savior and would want them to live for the same as well.”