In a commentary published Wednesday by USA Today, the Mississippi pastor whose sanctuary was burned to the ground said he and his congregants "will pray for the soul and peace of mind" of the person who set fire to their place of worship.
Jerry Waldrop, senior pastor of First Pentecostal Church of Holly Springs, said he and his congregation will continue to gather together to worship despite the wreckage, which came after the small church faced backlash for hosting services during the coronavirus pandemic.
"We recognize that not everyone shares our belief in the Word of God as revealed in the Bible," he wrote. "We are not offended that others don't share our firmly held belief that gathering together to worship and to study the Bible is an essential duty and necessary to the growth of the church and its members. And we will pray for the soul and peace of mind of someone who would harbor such hatred that he would take from us our cherished spiritual home."
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