MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Hundreds of parishioners and non-parishioners packed Holy City Church of God in Christ in Raleigh for a speech by Vice President Mike Pence Sunday. While a bulk of his speech was about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, he also talked policy and the Trump Administration.
“Frankly to be in Memphis on this occasion a city where [Martin Luther King Jr.] spent his last days is deeply humbling to me,” Vice President Mike Pence said in his speech.
Vice President Pence called Martin Luther King Jr. a true American hero and defender of every human’s rights during his speech on the eve of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Most importantly, he said, he admires Dr. King’s faith.
“Dr. King knew where the spirit of the Lord is there is freedom,” Vice President Pence said.
Vice President Pence got several moments of applause during his 15-minute speech.
“To me that's blessing and God favors us to have a Vice President who believes in the Bible,” Parishioner Thomas Gillylen said.
“I'm very proud,” Parishioner Gloria Walter said. “I’m so thankful he picked Memphis to spend Martin Luther King Day.”
“Memphis is not a political stop,” Protester Regina Clarke said “It's not a place where you'll do a stump speech to tell people they need to vote for a system that continues to put the impoverished further in poverty.”
Protesters greeted Vice President Pence as he arrived at Holy City Church of God in Christ Sunday.
“You are the exact opposite of anything MLK would stand for,” Protester Jeffrey Opp said.
The Vice President did use part of his speech to tout President Trump and his record.
“I want to assure you, under this administration, we've made every effort to open pathways to the American Dream for every American,” Vice President Mike Pence said.
Vice President Pence talked about the administration's pro-life stance and support of religious freedoms as well as unemployment numbers. For some inside the church they intend to keep politics out of the day.
“We're just serving God today,” Parishioner Tyrone Clements said. “It's not about political stuff.”
Something Vice President Pence did not talk about in his speech is the upcoming Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. This speech wrapped up the VP’s planned events in the Bluff City.