Philando Castile Funeral

Philando Castile, the Minnesota man who was fatally shot by police during a traffic stop, was laid to rest on Thursday, just two days before his 33rd birthday.

Thousands of mourners including St. Paul’s mayor, the state’s governor, two U.S. Senators, and a Congressman gathered at the Cathedral of St. Paul to pay their respects to their beloved Phil.

Philando’s white casket was carried to the cathedral by a horse-drawn carriage in a 40-minute procession.

Via The Star Tribune:

The crowd spilling into the aisles at the cathedral came “as people united in the hope that God intends the future to be better than the present,” said the Rev. John Ubel, who pointed out waves carved into the cathedral’s walls, “symbolic of the raging storms of life that surround us on all sides.”

“If today’s service provides even a tiny measure of peace,” he said, “then today — this day — will have been a good day.”

The Rev. Steve Daniels, Jr., of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, addressed Castile’s death more directly, saying: “Once again we have the death of an innocent black man whose life was taken at the hands of an officer due to his wide set nose.”

After witnessing civil rights struggles in the 1950s and 60s, Daniels told the crowd that he understands the frustration of people today.

“The Black Lives Matter movement does not suggest that other lives don’t matter,” he said. “It does not suggest that we don’t have our own issues in our race. Every race has issues.”

The movement, he said, “simply implies that we want to be respected — valued in the same light as other ethnic groups.”

Later, he added: “I am grateful that I live in a country that has rules and laws, and we must learn to respect the law and thank them for their services,” he said. “We’ve got to find ways to work together.”

Inside of the funeral program, Philando’s sister Allysza wrote, “You made history, you opened their eyes.”

His Aunt Shirley wrote, “His death is not in vain. The message sent across the world was a catalyst that will bring about reformation, justice and peace. Something good is going to happen.”


Rest in grace, Philando.