A nun inside a Roman Catholic church said that her life was threatened by a stranger as she sat on a bench and prayed Wednesday afternoon.
Security footage from the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph in Brooklyn, New York, shows 49-year-old Sister Mary Amador praying when a shirtless man approached her unprovoked.
"Another woman was praying as well in the first bench and a stranger came up to me," Sister Amador told WNYW-TV. "He said 'I don't believe in this because you don't help the poor.'"
At first, Amador said she sat on the bench and stayed silent, knowing there was another witness around, but the unidentified man's comments quickly became more hostile.
"He said, 'She can't help you, and I'm going to kill you,'" Amador said.
Amador stood and screamed, running away from the man and attracting the attention of the church's music director Alejandro Zuleta who was practicing the organ nearby. According to WNYW, Zuleta heard Amador screaming that the man was going to kill her, so he stood up and told the man he would need to leave.
The suspect fled the scene on foot, and police say they are investigating the incident as a possible hate crime under the assumption that Amador was targeted because of her religion.
When asked what message she had for the man, Amador gave a graceful response.
""I say, 'I forgive you, and you are my brother,'" she said.