The faithful gathered Thursday evening at Saint Ruth Missionary Baptist Church to remember Nelson Mandela.
Bishop Victor Curry spoke of his accomplishments in South Africa and in South Florida.
"He didn't have a sense of retaliation or vengeance toward those who mistreated him," said Bishop Curry.
Curry briefly touched on Mandela's controversial visit to Miami in 1990. The visit drew outrage from Cuban-Americans who were upset over Mandela's praise of Fidel Castro.
"In the aftermath of all that, not contention, but disappointment that it happened," Curry said.
The snubbing of Mandela led to a 3-year tourism boycott known as the quiet riots. The boycott ended with politicians walking back some of their criticism and African American getting single-member districts in Miami.
"He was a powerful man and a forgiving man," said Mamie Gooden-Lee.
Related: Twitter reacts to Mandela's death