Jacksonville, FL - It’s a surprising message to come from one local congregation mourning the loss of their Apostle.
“Sometimes it may take a little more prayer, a little more fasting, whatever it takes- but we know ultimately the bible commands us to forgive,” says Glorious Church of the Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith Assistant Pastor Michael Girard.
Pastor JH Bowser was beaten to death with a hammer Tuesday afternoon in a church-affiliated house on N. Market Street. 24-year-old Terrence Wright turned himself in to police, saying he was looking for money to buy crack cocaine.
“It’s just a tragedy, people are kind of taken aback because of the suddenness of it,” Girard says.
Girard says the congregation always knew Bowser as a kind and giving leader, so it’s not unusual to hear he would try to help people like Wright, who was recently released from jail. But it is that giving spirit that they also carry forward while coping with the loss.
“That makes it a little bit easier to get through this situation without any animosity or hate,” he says.
In fact, Girard has just one message for Wright.
“If I had a chance or an opportunity or anything, I’d tell him that we do forgive him,” Girard says.
He says this is a time they have to truly believe what has been preached and taught. He asks only for the community’s prayers to help them through this time.