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Emmanuel United Church of Christ


'Community Council' established

Highlands-News Sun
by Ruth Anne Lawson
June 3, 2020

A Community Council is established by Sheriff Paul Blackman from Highlands County Sheriff's Office. Rev. Miller and other community leaders who are on this Council and had their first meeting on what is going on in our nation and within our state with the different protests.

Community gathers to peacefully honor George Floyd

Highlands-News Sun
by Miguel Arceo
May 31, 2020

On Friday, Avon Park residents gathered at the Avon Park Community Center off of East Main Street to hold a march in his honor. Those attending were encouraged to wear black, white, and orange colors and to make signs in his honor. It was promoted as a strictly peaceful march in order to best honor his memory. Avon Park was not the only city to hold a gathering in memory of Floyd as the Emmanuel United Church of Christ in Sebring held a peaceful protest Saturday morning. Instead of wearing Panther colors, attendees were asked to wear blue as a sign of hope.

George Floyd has connections in Highlands County

Highlands News-Sun
by Ruth Anne Lawson
May 30, 2019

AVON PARK — George P. Floyd, the man at the center of the uproar in Minneapolis, was a former Highlands County resident and student athlete at South Florida State College, at the time known as South Florida Community College. Floyd died Monday night after being arrested and pinned to the ground by a Minneapolis police officer’s knee. A viral video surfaced of the arrest, sparking outrage and protest of the treatment of African-Americans by white law enforcement.

Aftershocks of George Floyd's death hit Central Florida

The Ledger
by:  Kathy Leigh Berkowitz
May 29, 2020

Aftershocks over the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who pleaded for air as a white police officer kneeled on his neck in Minneapolis, have traveled to Central Florida.  Emmanuel United Church of Christ responds by with a Non-Violent Peaceful Sign of Solidarity for the Minneapolis community event held on Saturday, May 30, 2020.

Dozens protest for peace in Avon Park

ABC Action News Tampa Bay
May 29, 2020

Dozens gathered in Highlands County to protest police brutality after the death of George Floyd.

Tampa Bay protests intensify

Telemundo TV Miami
William Velez
May 20, 2020

Protesters have vandalized, destroyed and looted shops as part of the protests following the death of George Floyd.


News Archives

Emmanuel United Church of Christ


News Archives

Vigil starts healing process

January 25, 2019

Story by Kim Leatherman | Sun Newspapers

Photo by Allen Moody

Emmanuel United Church of Christ hosted a vigil on Thursday night in the wake of the SunTrust bank shooting that took five innocent lives the day before. The vigil started the conversations on healing, coping and moving forward. Rev. George Miller welcomed everyone and made sure they knew the sanctuary was a place of safety to pray, sing, cry and grieve as each individual needed. Miller began the vigil by reading the Beatitudes from the Bible. Click link below for full story.

Service for Shooting Victims

January 25, 2019

Fox 13 News Tampa Bay

Facebook Story

Service for Shooting Victims: A church service is being held for the victims of a bank shooting that killed 5. Remembering the victims.

Community in mourning after bank shooting

January 25, 2019

Aaron Mesmer | Fox 13 News Tampa Bay

Fox 13 News Tampa Bay reported on the vigil that was held at our church on Thursday, January 24 in response to the bank shooting that killed 5 innocent women. 

Leaning on Faith: Local pastors urge community to love one another

January 25, 2019

Story by Wayne Price | Florida Today 

Photo by Craig Bailey

For a community that prides itself on its friendliness and willingness to help others in need, the shooting deaths of four employees and a customer at a SunTrust Bank branch Wednesday left many wondering why and struggling to cope with what comes next.

As funerals were being planned Friday for the shooting victims, community leaders, clergy and others were realizing just how tough it's going to be to move forward and heal – and maybe look to forgive the accused shooter.