Bishop of Oakland Diocese says he was robbed at gunpoint

Bay Area

OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) – Bishop Michael Barber says he was out for a walk Saturday afternoon when he came face to face with a man with a gun. 

He’s leaning on his faith, and the man above to pray for the man responsible for the terrifying moments — Terrified and afraid.

“A man pulled a gun on me, and pointed it at me, and said give me your wallet,” Bishop Michael Barber said.

Bishop Michael Barber turned to his faith, in his time of need.

On Saturday afternoon, the leader of the Oakland Diocese says he was out for a walk near the Paramount Theatre near 21st and Broadway when he came face to face with the armed man. 

Barber thought it was the end. 

“And I took out my wallet and I was shaking. He said give me the cash, give me the cash. I gave him the money. Then he saw my Bishop’s ring and then he says give me that ring. I was afraid. I would rather have my life, so I gave him the ring,” Barber said. “That ring means I’m married to the diocese, the way your wedding ring means to you.”  

Bishop Barber shared the news with his congregation during Sunday service. 

According to the latest stats from the city of Oakland, overall crime is down by more than 20-percent but some violent crimes, including homicides and armed robberies, are up from this time last year.  

Armed robberies involving guns are up by more than 50-percent.  

“I’m supposed to act the way that Jesus did. And I’ve been thinking. Geez, I hope they catch that guy. I hope that he doesn’t rob someone else, or one of you walking home from church or walking to your car down the street,” Barber said.

Bishop Barber is using the power of prayer, not only for him but for the man wanted for breaking a sacred rule. 

“The only way we defeat evil and crime and hatred is to pour out the love of Jesus wherever we find evil crime and hatred and things like that,” Barber said.

After the incident, Barber says the man took off on a bike. 

KRON4 reached out to Oakland police to get more details about a suspect. 

So far, we have yet to hear back.

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