The Best Sermon About Trayvon That You Will Hear

Pastor Howard-John Wesley rallies his congregation to push back against the verdict.

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If you hear one sermon about America’s Trayvon Martin moment, let it be this one. Pastor Howard-John Wesley of Alfred Street Baptist Church in Alexandria, Va., preached this powerful message on Sunday, July 14, the morning after a Florida jury found George Zimmerman not guilty of Martin’s death. “I have a racial consciousness that lets me know that in situations like this it typically does not work out in our favor,” he preaches. “This is not the first we’ve had to learn to live with a verdict that hurts.”

Wesley tells TIME:

My Christian faith in the resurrection of Jesus Christ assures me that an unjust verdict is never the end of the story and the saga of divine grace and justice. I place my faith and surrender my anger to the Lord and then I’m grabbing my shoes and marching with others to the Departments of Justice around this land demanding that the story of Trayvon Martin continue.

For more on how Wesley and other pastors around the country are rallying their congregations to push back against the verdict and the state of race relations in America, read this week’s cover story.

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193 comments
monty943
monty943

Do those of you who think "he had it coming" or "deserved to be die" feel better by making claims about his character?  Do you feel it was justified based on said character?  It's horrible to read some of the statements below and to think that people actually try to convince themselves that someone "deserved to die" because they had a "history".  That's probably the most ridiculous reason I've ever heard especially when talking about a 17 year old kid.  People do stupid things when they're 17 which most of you seem to forget.  You can't tell me that those of you writing these ridiculous justifications didn't do things that would have been considered "thug" like as based on your definition.  Then there are those that say "well, he was going to die anyway" as if that makes a difference.  No one will know what actually happened that night except for Zimmerman and Martin, but to somehow justify the death of a 17 year old kid because you think he's a "thug" is a sad reflection on society as a whole.  You base your opinion on media broadcasts and a complete lack of understanding.  If you had actually met this kid, you might of thought of him differently since he was a good student and was known by his teachers as "creative" and "happy".  So he got in trouble as we all do when we're kids, but that doesn't mean he should die for it.  You don't have the right to define what's right and what's wrong nor do you have the right to be judge and jury.  I hope you sleep better at night with your warped logic and that someday you'll lose someone close to you that everyone else thought was a "thug"; everyone else except for you, that is.  

GregZotta
GregZotta

Trayvon Martin is dead because of the actions of Trayvon Martin.Trayvon was a thug wanna-be gang-banger. There is a record of Trayvon being in possession of jewelry stolen in a burglary that was covered up to save the reputation of the school. Martin's family and all the other race-baiters including members of the Obama Regime were/are calling for Zimmerman's lynching. This case should have never been brought to trial based on the facts.George Zimmerman was doing his job as the neighborhood watchman, when he was attacked by Trayvon Martin and had to shoot him to keep from getting killed. Trayvon Martin attacked George Zimmerman and was bashing his head against the concrete. Zimmerman feared for his life and therefore was justified in shooting Trayvon Martin.People have a God-given right to defend themselves. This was not a case of "Stand your Ground", but self defense.

Soon after his death, these caring parents’set up the Trayvon Martin Foundation so they can get   money “for the cause.” They also trademarked Trayvon’s name. What "grieving" parents do that?  Since then they have settled with the Neighborhood Association’s insurance carrier for a million plus and are looking at a Wrongful Death suit.  They are out there to make money for the "foundation." On Trayvon's tombstone it reads, "Job Well done," What does that mean? Does it mean that his death is bringing them money? They are ringing the cash register. If Tracy Martin and Shirley Fulton truly want to do something constructive teach your children not to be thugs! 

LandonFaulkner
LandonFaulkner

What a piece of racist garbage. Yeh moron thats what God wants you to preach about to your congregation.


Zimmerman killed an animal just the same as Michael Vick did. Trayvon was a street thug punk that got what he deserved and justice was served. Shut up and get over it ya hypocrites. Read your bible that was written by NON-BLACK men and learn something.

AshleighMarieBrown
AshleighMarieBrown

@LandonFaulkner Trayvon Martin was not an animal, although he was hunted like one by someone with the same racist mind you possess. Listen to the phone call George Zimmerman makes as he HUNTS this boy and FOLLOWS him without cause. Of course you can believe what you want, but somewhere in your dark heart I hope you realize the Truth of this matter.

otownguy
otownguy

Trayvon was killed in self defense because he attacked someone. Plain and simple.

Teach your kids better and maybe they won't end up thugs.

He got what he deserved.

JoshuaDuPage
JoshuaDuPage

hey jannet long your so full of poo that your eyes r brown...not all gang bangers carry guns...i sure don't..and have been a Latin king for 25 years. treyvon did have access to guns, his phone had him holding them...another thing the candy and soda he went to the store for? just earlier on Facebook, his posts were public, he was asking his frond if he could get some codeine to mix with skittles and soda for some weird drug..treyvon was a little piece of crap. he choose to attack someone he thought was a victim...surprise he had a gun...maybe if treyvon hadent of been kicked out of school and had to move up to the place where he was looking in windows at night in the rain..when he thought no one would see him..maybe he wouldn't have been shot, at least not that night..for him and people like him, its only a matter of time before their in prison or dead...i hope more people stand up to ignorant thugs and yes i hope those thugs who victimize people get killed. their a dredge on society that's got to spend 30-40,000 dollars a year to keep em warehoused. bullets are so much cheaper and they garentee non repeat offencec

thcbakesme
thcbakesme

A verdict has been rendered. Be happy, could have been worse, shame on those of you who do not see the light and are out-right denying truth. That lost child will do no harm, no more!

JanetLongMitchell
JanetLongMitchell

@thcbakesmeYOU ARE FULL OF CRAP. YOU WOULDN'T KNOW THE TRUTH IF IT BIT YOU IN THE FACE. LET ME ENLIGHTEN YOU WITH THE REAL FACTS..(Lets explore the lies told by certain right wing nut jobs.Trsyvon was in a gang. No he wasn't. If trayvon had been in a gang he would have had a gun and Zimmerman would have been the one found dead. Gang members don't go anywhere without a gun. And they tend to get a little testy when people follow them. Trayvon was a drug dealer,another lie. talking about smoking weed with your friends which a lot of teens do doesn't make you a drug dealer. Trayvon was arrested for gang activity,no he wasn't. Trayvon was involved in some burglaries,no he wasn't and that jewelery story people always mention was never stolen and was listed as found property and not relevant. Trayvon and his cousin Stephen raped a girl,another lie didn't happen and not relevant. trayvon doubled back to attack Zimmerman,an obvious lie. If trayvon doubled back it was for only one reason someone had intercepted him and prevented him from getting home. His friend said he old her he was was gonna tried to lose him again before continuing home.which is exactly what i did when i was his age and a guy followed me from the store i took a different route and lost him before i continued home. I had an advantage Trayvon didn't have i knew the neighborhood like the back of my hand i knew where to go where i could lose him. trayvon didn't live in the neighborhood he didn't know it that well he tried to get back to the only place where he could be safe.unfortunate he thought he had l;ost zimmerman and was trying to home when Zimmerman found him again.where his body was found proves that. He was 60ft away from the t and 360ft from home when he was killed.Trayvon didn't chase Zimmerman he did not grab for the gun he did not say "you're gonna die tonight #%^^$. I believe he said that to trayvon before he killed him.Trayvon didn't circle his truck. trayvon wasn't racist we know from interviews that were done with a few of his friends he had white friends.And even if he were hardly a justification for murder.the prosecution screwed up the case. There was more than enough evidence to convict they let the defense get away with too much bull crap including using an obviously doctored photo. Zimmerman had no horizontal cuts on the back of his head. and with jurors who chose not to even bother with the evidence. And dozens of friends and family who were willing to commit perjury. and a dishonest so called expert which the prosecution did cross examine like they should have. 2 police officers who were more concerned about covering their own asses and a prosecution who was more concerned about protecting a corrupt police department all contributed to a murder going free. there cared nothing about the victim. a kid whose last terrifying words were heard all over the world. TRAYVON BENJASMIN MARTIN WAS LITERALLY SCREAMING FOR HELP. THEY DIDN'T CARE. TRAYVON BENJAMIN MARTIN WAS LITERALLY BEGGING FOR HIS LIFE. THEY DIDN'T CARE. TRAYVON BENJAMIN MARTIN WAS LITERALLY CRYING. THEY DID NOT CARE. In every trial i have ever seen on court tv, they always say "we speak for the victims because they are not here to speak for them selves. That apparently did not apply in this case despite the victims own words being heard in that court room. There are a number of people who should be ashamed of themselves including the prosecution and the people who heard or saw more than they are telling. Zimmerman will go after someone else and it will be a person who is weaker than he is because that is his pattern. He knew Trayvon was no match for him him that's why he went after him in the first place.)

PubliusToo
PubliusToo

@JanetLongMitchell  Martin in a gang? Irrelevant even if true. Martin caught carrying stolen jewelry? Irrelevant even if true. Martin committed burglaries? Irrelevant even if true as he wasn't committing one at that time. Photographic evidence of injuries lend credence to Zimmerman's version of events. Police description they picked him up lend credence to Zimmerman's version of events.

Martin doing drugs? Could be relevant and contributory to a paranoiac state of mind. Martin was talking on the phone with a friend thinking he was being followed by someone for some nefarious purpose. Zimmerman was on the phone to police to coordinate an intercept and investigate. You would have people believe Zimmerman would have police listening while he committed murder.

Your belief of what occurred that night doesn't even rise to the level of hearsay. You blind yourself with hatred and emotion and then want everyone else to see with your eyes an animus that could not be proved from the whole of Zimmerman's background. The truth is that you are doing Martin a greater injustice by not accepting the fact that he is dead because of his own actions.

LandonFaulkner
LandonFaulkner

@JanetLongMitchell @thcbakesme You are an idiot and couldn't be more wrong. YOUR filthy lie pedaling liberal rags like MSNBC ignored and covered up ALL the true facts that showed what a piece of garbage Trayvon was. He's DEAD. Get over it!!! Justice wins!! HAHAHAHA

GregZotta
GregZotta

@JanetLongMitchell @thcbakesme

The black racialists did not listen to the facts of this case. They were stirred up by the race-baiters and the manipulative media and their only concern was a black ‘child” was killed, by a “white” Hispanic. Do you think they are concerned with the multitude of black children that are being killed on a daily basis in cities around the country, by black thugs?Trayvon Martin is dead because of the actions of Trayvon Martin. This case should have never been brought based on the facts. It was brought on by the Obama Regime race-baiters. George Zimmerman was doing his job as the neighborhood watchman, when he was attacked by Trayvon Martin and had to shoot him to keep from getting killed.What does have relevance is Zimmerman's frame of mind when Trayvon continued to bash Zimmerman's head against the concrete. Zimmerman was in fear of his life and believed Trayvon would kill him.therefore, he has/had the right to defend himself.

LarryWaite
LarryWaite

Reverend Doctor?  Yes, sir, you ARE confused!!!

Infiniteconqueror
Infiniteconqueror

This is just religion at it's best!! Only Satan causes the many to maintain focus on what's different!! Gods desire, is for us to maintain focus on what's essentially (in spirit - character) the same. Not at all on what's external (what the eyes can see) and different. We are to zero in on (discern) one's true character. God is not the author of confusion, Satan is! 1 Corinthians 14:33. Christianity is a life of faith in His Word (Principles) towards the manifestation of a better reality... not a religion. The Christian life has to continuously severe the emotional umbilical cord that desires to keep itself attached to the negatives that one believes to be true. We are to discern by the Spirit and move forward... How can one be forgiven (for what they believe to be true) if they don't forgive?

dougkc1962
dougkc1962

None of us saw or heard all of the facts nor were we instructed in the law by the judge as was the jury.

Our system works and a verdict was rendered. 

Howard John is doing exactly what Satan enjoys so much: Mix lies with truth and fill in the blanks with things of which he has no idea. In this case, Mr. John has no idea of the facts in the Zimmerman case and to spew hatred from a pulpit does nothing but instill hate, division and confusion. Exactly what Satan likes misguided preachers to do.

JanetLongMitchell
JanetLongMitchell

@dougkc1962 THERE IS NOTHING HATEFUL ABOUT HIS SERMON. YOU JUST REFUSE TO SEE THE TRUTH THAT RACISM STILL EXIST. AS FOR THE ZIMMERMAN TRAIL I DID LOTS OF RESEARCH & EVERY THING ABOUT THAT TRAIL WAS A JOKE. SO MANY LIES WERE & ARE STILL BEING TOLD. IT'S DISGUSTING.

JamesVawter
JamesVawter

@JanetLongMitchell @dougkc1962 janet, you are out of your head... your caps lock is busted, and YOU can not see the truth for all the lies you have been told. YOU see racism where there is none, and generally that make YOU a racist. the only thing about the trial that was a joke was the trial its self and the reason for the trial, which was racist. you live in a world of denial, pink sky's and everything is powered by unicorn farts. the libtard media picked up this to stir a frenzy because of poor ratings. they invented a new race of person and the only lies were the ones told by YOUR news outlets. 

RichardSeeley
RichardSeeley

One word for the sermon. Shameful.

One word for the parents. Denial.

VincentSmith
VincentSmith

You people are all doomed the one world order has played you like a fiddle and you will be enslaved and eaten by the beast!  I am gonna put many of you in my freezer when the food stops!

FredEdward
FredEdward

"One of the most important, and remarkably under-publicized facts that came out at trial is that one of the detectives, while interrogating Zimmerman at the police station that night, told him that the entire incident had been caught on surveillance video. The detective was bluffing, but Zimmerman didn’t know that. His reaction: “Thank God”."

http://www.dlas.org/questions-zimmerman-verdict/