Rev. Joel Frederick said he was hurting over the shootings in Minnesota, Louisiana, and Dallas. He wasn’t quite sure what to say, so instead he did something, the only thing he could.
The Alabama pastor invited Jefferson County Sheriff Lieutenant Mike Yarbrough, Birmingham police Officer J. Logan and church member Adrian Robinson to the altar of McCalla's Grace Life Baptist Church. Pastor Frederick then washed their feet, as Jesus did for his disciples in a display of humility and servanthood following the Last Supper.
In a video posted by to the church’s Facebook page, Frederick called Yarbrough and Logan to the front telling them, “We don't pray for them like we should. We don't support them like we should. Thank you gentleman for what you do, striving to make our place safe for our families to live. We repent of not telling you often enough.”
When he was done, he called Robinson forward, kneeling before him, he washed his feet saying “Adrian, I'm sorry for the injustices that continue in this country toward African Americans. I'm sorry that you have to be concerned about your children in ways that I don't have to be concerned about my own. And I'm sorry I haven't tried hard enough to understand and I want you to know I love you and you're my brother. And you always will be.”
Rev. Frederick’s actions during Sunday's 9 a.m. service didn’t leave a dry eye in the congregation. After the washing of the feet, members of the church came forward to embrace
“I felt on Saturday like God was telling me to do that. It was just heavy,” Frederick told AL.com. “I told my wife to pray for me, that God was telling me to do something but I didn't even tell her what it was.”