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Former NYC Mayor mourns Rev Butts exit

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Mayor Bloomberg with Abyssinian Development Corporation (ADC) Chair, Rev. Dr. Calvin Butts, speaks at ADC's Harlem Renaissance Day.

Former Mayor of the New York City, Mike Bloomberg, has sent condolences to the family of Reverend Butts, one of New York City’s most prominent religious leaders, who died at the age of 73.

In his condolence message on Friday October 28, 2022, Bloomberg stated, ‘We have lost a giant of New York: Rev. Calvin Butts III, who took the idea of building the Kingdom of God literally.”

“He used bricks and mortar to construct new homes, a high school, a day care, a supermarket, and spaces for other businesses, which changed the face of Harlem.”

Bloomberg asserted that Rev Butts was one of the very first people he sought out when he decided to run for mayor.

“He knew how to get big things done and was principled, not partisan,” former mayor said.

Bloomberg described the late Reverend as a great partner for his administration. “He combined big dreams with a determined, can-do spirit — and our city will miss him dearly.”

Commenting about the late Reverend, a New Yorker, Neil Carroll, wrote, “May Reverend Butts rest in peace and may God comfort all who love him.”

Another New Yorker, Karen Willoughby, described him as a giant.

“RIP you giant! Thank you for your selfless service.”

Butts led Harlem’s Abyssinian Baptist Church as a senior pastor for more than 30 years and spent 50 years in the ministry.

The church announced his death early Friday morning, saying he passed away peacefully after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Butts was dedicated to his faith, but his impact went far beyond the pulpit. He was an advocate for social and racial justice and was a guiding light in his Harlem community.

Friday night, flowers and candles sat outside his church, where CBS2’s Dick Brennan found some parishioners paying their respects.

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