Grace Church, Pastor Steve Berger

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A Christian organization of all denominations is asking the governor to denounce his pastor's actions after he was one of the people at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.

The Southern Christian Coalition is asking Gov. Bill Lee to reject Grace Church, Pastor Steve Berger. Their call for action comes after Berger attended a pro-Trump rally before the riot at the U.S. Capitol and blamed members of Antifa, in part, for the violence.

“I’m not here to tell you that all the troublemakers were Antifa members – but I can tell you this: they were there – they were there – they were present – and they were identified,” Berger said in a Facebook live obtained by News 4.

On Friday, the US Department of Justice confirmed that Antifa was not involved in Wednesday's events.

Now, members from the Southern Christian Coalition are calling on faith leaders to "act with integrity and honesty" and "not use their public profiles for political gain or to spread conspiracies."

"Once again, we see leaders blaming others instead of taking responsibility for their own actions," Pastor Chris Williamson of Strong Tower Bible Church in Nashville said in a statement on Friday.

Berger did not say if he was in Washington specifically for the rally but described being among the crowd. Later on, in a Facebook Live from Washington D.C., Berger condemned the riots' violence, preached about the end of days, and warned of troubled days ahead.

Williamson said Berger and Lee, as well as U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn and Bill Hagerty, "must look in the mirror, repent, and be held accountable for their role in not accepting the results of the presidential election."

"These folks have lied for weeks and have fanned the flames of fear and distrust among their base, which is what helped produce the violence we saw on display in the riot at the Capitol building that has now left five people dead, including a federal police officer," Pastor Williamson said. "It is my hope that Governor Lee and our other elected officials in Congress will commit to being more loyal to serving the people than they have been to blindly and primarily serving their political party and this outgoing president."

 

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