Online Church Service Hacked With Adult Images, Racial Slurs

The Friendship Sunday school class of Belmont United Methodist Church in Nashville, Tenn., meets online Sunday, March 15, 2020, after church leadership encouraged people to worship from home in response to the coronavirus. Image courtesy of Susan Hay.

A Greensboro, North Carolina church was the victim of “Zoom-bombing” over the weekend when unidentified assailants hacked into an online Sunday service and bombarded church members with pornography and racial slurs.

Nicholas Glenn, leader of Sharpe Road Church of Christ, told Fox8 that a group of individuals entered the congregation’s Zoom meeting on Sunday, blasted it with pornographic images, and accosted members with racial slurs and “threatening words of hate.”

The outlet reports that the incident is being considered a harassment case and is under investigation by the internet crimes team of the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office.

“We’ve had our share of challenges, but nothing like we’ve had today,” Glenn told Fox8. “We have Zoom. People like to see each other. It’s kind of a way for us to see each other and worship together.”

“It was probably about four to five different people and they were just rapid fire saying different things,” Glenn recalled, adding that the hackers identified themselves as white supremacists and peppered their assault with phrases like “MAGA” and “white lives matter.”

“My wife looked at the chat box and she saw it and was like, ‘Stop the broadcast,’” Glenn explained.

Glenn says the assault continued, progressing to death threats and telling members to “get off church and go pick your cotton.”

Glenn told the outlet that the sheriff’s office will monitor this Sunday’s Zoom service in case of a repeated attack.

“It’s discouraging to say the least. Sunday is kind of a day where we can get away from what we deal with all week,” Glenn lamented.

“It’s real. It has been real and still is real,” Glenn said of persistent racism that motivated the attack. “Times like this, we need to unify each other and understand that we are all God’s children and God made us all equal.”

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