(Photo: Facebook/Bishop Wiley Jackson)
Bishop Wiley Jackson of the popular Gospel Tabernacle Cathedral in Atlanta, Ga., told his congregation on Sunday that he has forgiven the teens suspected of murdering his younger brother Jerrick Jackson, 47, in May.
The megachurch pastor expressed pity for the teens for not only taking his brother's life, but destroying their own as well. He also called on the members of his church to help make a difference in the lives of young men.
"I mean, my family's impacted. Their family's impacted," said Jackson in a video of the address noted by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "It's time that we all got to step up and do something. What could make young men have so much anger that they want to do harm to someone?"
According to the AJC, Jerrick Jackson and his fiancée were attacked by several men armed with guns outside their home in northwest Atlanta on May 7. They were first robbed and the men then forcibly entered inside their home.
Police say the suspects had followed the victim's Porsche in a black mustang after they visited a fast-food restaurant.
Anbiya Mitchell, the daughter of Jerrick Jackson's fiancée, reportedly heard the attack from upstairs the home and told police that Jerrick saved her life by telling the men not to go upstairs and began fighting with them to prevent them from finding her. The younger Jackson was shot multiple times in the torso during the fight.
Last Thursday it was announced that Alejandro "Big Poppa" Pitts, 18, was arrested by Atlanta police and U.S. Marshals while Geno Lewis, 19, turned himself in to the Fulton County District Attorney's Office on Friday. They were both charged with murder and armed robbery.
In revealing the information to his congregation on Sunday, however, Bishop Jackson used the opportunity to make a broader statement on misguided young men.
"How we're grateful on one side that they've been arrested," he said. "We're sad on the other side in that a life, or lives, have been misdirected," the Bishop noted.