DESOTO COUNTY, Miss. (WREG)– Members of a small African-American congregation in Mississippi were shocked Sunday morning to find a KKK flyer on the front steps of their church.
The flyer, urging people to join the Klan, outraged Union Hill Missionary Baptist Church members just a month away from the church’s 143rd anniversary.
Pastor Rodney Moore of Union Hill Missionary Baptist Church said the discovery of this KKK recruitment flyer on the steps of this Desoto County house of worship will not be tolerated.
“When Satan is busy, then you expect the unexpected,” Moore said. “In no way will that deter us from coming in here and serving God, because God has been too good to us.”
The flyer, along with a few rocks in a plastic bag, was found by Sunday School members who were looking forward to fellowship.
It was a bold and threatening letter Deacon Alvin Rice said was found just a few feet from a sign welcoming members back to “in-person” services.
“The top of the flyer … you could see it talk about the Klan and joining the Klan and 14 … I think it was talking about 14 states are building back up,” Rice said. “We finally got the vaccine in and all that stuff…people start coming back to church and this, right now, has caused people to be frightened again.”
Sunday morning, Sonsaray Bonner, an associated administrator at the church, called Desoto County 911 to report the matter.
Bonner said she was taken aback by the dispatcher’s response, but found out from the investigating deputy that Union Hill isn’t the first church in Desoto County to receive the flyer.
“He said that he was sick of it, sick of having to deal with this and that he hates racism,” Bonner said.
The church has been forced to buy a new HVAC system after copper thieves left the old unit in pieces, bullet holes in the church mailbox, and now the KKK flyer are obstacles Pastor Moore vows to overcome as the church looks to its 143rd anniversary.
“We’re going to protect this church and our congregation at all cost,” Moore said.
The Desoto County Sheriff’s Department issued a statement Monday saying, “We are taking this matter very seriously, and the investigation is ongoing. We will provide an update if any suspects are identified.”
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, condemned the flyer in a statement.
“We condemn this despicable attempt to intimidate the Black community in DeSoto, and we stand in solidarity with them against racism and hate,” said CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad. “Law enforcement should investigate this disturbing incident and ensure that houses of worship and other community centers are safe.”