A Park Hill church will be ringing bells Monday to commemorate the 3rd anniversary of George Floyd’s death

Park Hill United Methodist Church has conducted the remembrance every Monday for the past three years
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Jared O of Denver stops to take a photo of the George Floyd mural on Colfax at High Street in Denver in April of 2021.
Hart Van Denburg/CPR

Since the day George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer, the Park Hill United Methodist Church has rung its bells every Monday for nine minutes and 29 seconds -- the amount of time the officer left his knee on Floyd's neck, restricting his oxygen.

That tradition will continue at noon on Monday, the week of the third anniversary of Floyd's murder.

"After the awakening that a lot of white Americans in particular got, with what happened with George Floyd, [the church's bell ringers] did not want to just stop," Rev. Valerie Jackson, the lead pastor for the church, said. "They just felt that they needed to keep that awareness alive for the whole community so that people would not forget that Black lives really do matter."

Jackson said her church's commitment to racial justice matches the church's history. In the 1960's, the lead pastor at the time, Rev. Carlton Babbs and his congregation decided to integrate the church.

"It was historically an all white church until that time," Jackson said. "And [Babbs] actually went out into the neighborhood knocking on doors of African-American families, inviting them to come into the Park Hill United Methodist community. Many of them heeded that invitation and that call."

On Monday's bell-ringing, several speakers, including Denver City Councilmember Candi CdeBaca, will address gatherers.

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