San Francisco Bay Area Religious Leaders Condemn the Killing of George Floyd and Structural Racism

As religious leaders of diverse traditions we understand human life to be the greatest and most sacred gift endowed by our Creator. Inherent in that gift is the inalienable right to live freely and not in fear.

The May 25, 2020 abhorrent killing of George Floyd, in Minneapolis, at the knee of a law enforcement official, sworn and entrusted to protect the public and keep the peace, is yet another stark reminder of humanity’s blindness to the sacredness of that gift of life and society’s failure, if not refusal, to act to ensure equal rights for all created beings.

We lament the murder and death of George Floyd and pray for him, his family, loved ones and all in need of strength and comfort in this fragile time of grief.

The overwhelming national response to George Floyd’s death, manifested in peaceful protests, not only honors his life, but powerfully expresses the threshold of tolerance we as Americans have reached for injustice, systematic racism and discrimination against people of color. This powerful resurgence of a long overdue civil rights  movement will not be silenced until structural change is realized.

We lift our voices and stand in unity and solidarity with our sisters and brothers of color in proclaiming that BLACK LIVES MATTER.

Kaushik Roy, Chair, San Francisco Interfaith Council

Mario Paz, Vice Chair, San Francisco Interfaith Council

John McKnight, Treasurer, San Francisco Interfaith Council

Nancy Nielsen, Secretary, San Francisco Interfaith Council

Rita Semel, Past Chair, San Francisco Interfaith Council

G.L. Hodge, Past Chair, San Francisco Interfaith Council

Michael G. Pappas, M.Div., Executive Director, San Francisco Interfaith Council

Rev. Jeanelle N. Ablola, Lead Pastor, Pine United Methodist Church

Rev. Ineda P. Adesanya, President/CEO, The Chaplaincy Institute

Rabbi Dan Ain, Congregation Beth Sholom

Fr. Arturo Albano, Pastor, St. Mary’s Cathedral

Abu Qadir Al-Amin, Imam, San Francisco Muslim Community Center

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of California

Fatih Ferdi Ates, Director, Pacifica Institute

Wilma Batiste, SF Interfaith Council Board Member, Neighborhood Baptist Church

Fr. Greg Bonfiglio, S.J., Pastor, St. Ignatius Catholic Church

Rev. Dr. Amos C. Brown, Pastor, Third Baptist Church & President, SF Branch NAACP

Rev. Angela Brown, JD, Minister: Community Engagement, Advocacy & Justice, CA-NV Conference, United Methodist Church Conference

Rev. Alexis Cambe, Grace United Methodist Church

Rev. Gerald P. Caprio, Executive Director and Board Chair, Interfaith Center at the Presidio

Rev. Richard Carlini, RN BA C-RNPC, Transform Myself Inc., A Unity Ministry

Rev. Calvin Chinn, Transitional Pastor and Head of Staff, Calvary Presbyterian Church

The Rev. Canon Dr. Ellen Clark-King, Vice Dean and Canon for Social Justice, Grace Cathedral

Rev. Robert E. Collins, Minister at Large, Centers for Spiritual Living

Rev. Kōdō Conlin, San Francisco Zen Center

Lisa Countryman-Quiroz, Chief Executive Officer, Jewish Vocational Service (JVS)

Rev. Staci Current, Bay District Superintendent, CA-NV Conference, United Methodist Church

Rev. Linda Ruth Cutts, Zen Buddhist, San Francisco Zen Center, Green Gulch Farm Zen Center

Quentisha Davis Wiles, MSW, ASW, MDIV, Senior Pastor, Pittsburg United Methodist Church

Rev. Kristi Denham, Peninsula Multifaith Coalition

M. Rev. Robert M. Dittler, OSB, Abbot-Bishop, White Robed Monks of St. Benedict

Rev. Elaine Donlin, Minister Assistant, Buddhist Church of San Francisco

Rev. Lori Eickmann, Interim Pastor, St. John’s Lutheran Church (ELCA), Antioch

Rabbi Serena Eisenberg, Northern California Director, AJC

Rev. Elizabeth Ekdale, Lead Pastor, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church

Maha Elgenaidi, Executive Director, Islamic Networks Group (ING)

Rev. Greg Fain, San Francisco Zen Center

Fred Fielding, Global Council Trustee – North America, United Religions Initiative

Rev. Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J., President, University of San Francisco

Rev. Victor H. Floyd, Minister of Spiritual Care, Calvary Presbyterian Church

Rev. Norman Fong, Parish Associate, Presbyterian Church in Chinatown

Dr. Anita Friedman, Executive Director, Jewish Family and Children’s Services

Rabbi Pam Frydman, Congregation B’nai Emunah and President, No. California Board of Rabbis

Andrew Galvan, The Ohlone Indian Tribe and Curator, Old Mission Dolores

Rabbi Jessica Zimmerman Graf, Senior Rabbi, Congregation Sherith Israel

Rev. Tova Green, San Francisco Zen Center

Julie Greenfield, President, Eden Area Interfaith Council

Tyler Harris Gregory, Executive Director, Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC)

Iftekhar Hai, President, UMA Interfaith Alliance

Commissioner Hala K. Hijazi, San Francisco Muslim Community Center

Cantor Linda Hirschhorn, Spiritual Leader, Temple Beth Sholom, San Leandro

David Hoffman, Chair, Interfaith Council of Sonoma County

The Rev. Mark W. Holmerud, bishop, Sierra Pacific Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Paige Hosking, SF Interfaith Council Board Member, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Elder Gayle Humphrey, Child of God

Rev. Heather More Iarusso, San Francisco Zen Center

The Rev. Victor H. Kazanjian, Jr., Executive Director, United Religions Initiative

Father Stephen Kyriacou, Dean, Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral

Rev. Junchol Lee, Senior Pastor, San Francisco Swedenborgian Church

Michael Lee, Executive Director, Donaldina Cameron House

Rev. Joy-Ellen Lipsky, CCP, PMP, CCM

Robert Mar Ephrem Lopez, Bishop, Mar Thoma Orthodox Church in America

Rev. Valerie McEntee, San Francisco Night Ministry

Rev. Will McGarvey, Executive Director, Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County

Rev. Jake Medcalf, Lead Pastor, First Presbyterian Church of Hayward, Castro Valley

Rev. Ron Moe-Lobeda, Associate Pastor, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church

Rev Dr. Arlene K. Nehring, Senior Pastor, Eden United Church of Christ, Hayward

The Rev. Monique L. Ortiz, St. Mary and St. Martha Lutheran Church and SF Night Ministry

Dr. Deon Nielsen Price, organist, Golden Gate Ward, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Rev. Scott Quinn, Executive Director, Marin Interfaith Council

Jay Roller, Board President, Live Oak Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, Alameda

Rabbi Amanda Russell, Congregation Beth Sholom

Abiding Abbess Fu Schroeder, Green Gulch Farm

Rev. Lien Shutt, Head Priest of Sudden Leap/Access to Zen

Rabbi Beth Singer, Senior Rabbi, Congregation Emanu-El

Rabbi Jonathan Singer, Senior Rabbi, Congregation Emanu-El

Harriet Skelly, President, Congregation Shir Ami

The Rev. Debra Low Skinner, Vicar, Christ Episcopal Church Sei Ko Kai

Camilla Smith, Vice President of Development, Interfaith Center at the Presidio

Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern, Senior Minister, First Unitarian Universalist Society of SF

Rev. Sadie Stone, Bethany United Methodist Church

Rabbi Andrew Straus, Deputy Northwest Regional Director, J Street

Rev. Dr. Leslie Carole Taylor, Senior Minister, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Concord

Dr. Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi, Vice Provost & Chief Diversity Officer, University of San Francisco

Angie Watson-Hajjem, Chair, Alameda All Faiths Coalition

Rev. Steven Weintraub, Zen Buddhist, San Francisco Zen Center, Green Gulch Farm Zen Center

Marvin K. White, Minister of Celebration, GLIDE Memorial Church and GLIDE Foundation

Rev. Gengyoko Tim Wicks, San Franciso Zen Center

Pastor Connie Winter-Eulberg, St. Andrews Lutheran Church, San Mateo

Rev. Marvin Lance Wiser, Associate Minister, Eden United Church of Christ, Hayward

Malcolm Yeung, Executive Director, Chinatown Community Development Center

The Very Rev. Dr. Malcolm Clemens Young, Dean, Grace Cathedral

Rev. Tenzen David Zimmerman, Abiding Abbot, San Francisco Zen Center