MINNEAPOLIS — In the past year, faith leaders have been doing a lot of heavy lifting, lifting both prayers and spirits.
"All I'm here to do is continue to pray for our communities, pray for those who have their family members that are still living through this daily," Stacey Smith said. Smith is the Presiding Elder and Judicatory Head of African Methodist Episcopal Church. "Keep them lifted up. That's what we have to do."
She said she came with a tight feeling in her heart, as she was listening to the announcement of the verdict on her way to Shiloh Temple in Minneapolis.
But the announcement of the verdict, saying that former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is guilty on all three charges he had been facing, brought with it a lightening of the load for many.
"The burden has been lifted. The grief is still there," Bishop Richard Howell of Shiloh Temple said. "But there is hope that follows grief. They say grief is the consequence you pay when you love somebody, so when you love somebody like this and they're gone, we do have to heavily grieve for that, but I think it's a healthy grief to know from this process [that] a country can look better after all this is over."
A collective release of emotions morphed into a duty to meaningfully move forward, Tuesday evening.
"I'm overjoyed right now," Tanya Eubanks said. "We saw a man die on our TV set last summer and now we're seeing justice served. So what more can we say?"
"It's still not going to bring back George Floyd. It's still not going to bring back Daunte Wright, so we just now have to lift them up and do the right things, as the Twin Cities, as Minnesota," Smith added.
"We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union - I believe that's the preamble - in order to form a more perfect union, let's begin now," Bishop Howell said.
Shiloh Temple will hold a viewing for Daunte Wright Wednesday afternoon from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Funeral services will be held on Thursday at noon.