Many of the 100,000 congregations related to National Council of Churches member communions will ring church bells Friday morning to mark one week since 20 children and six adults were killed by a gunman in a Newtown, Conn. elementary school.
Thousands of houses of worship will observe a minute of silence and sound their bells 26 times in memory of the victims who died in the school. Authorities believe the alleged shooter also killed his mother before going to the school with an automatic rifle.
Rev. Michael Livingston, president of the National Council of Churches from 2006-2007 and most recently director of the NCC’s poverty initiative, will join faith leaders in a press conference at 9 a.m. Friday, Dec. 21, in the National Cathedral here to urge Congress and the President “to take meaningful action to address the national epidemic of gun violence.”
In addition to Livingston, speakers at the press event Friday will include the Rev. Dr. Carroll A. Baltimore, Sr., President, Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc.; Imam Mohamed Magid, President, Islamic Society of North America; the Rev. Gabriel Salguero, Senior Pastor, Lamb’s Church; Rabbi David Saperstein, Director, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism; and Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, Executive Vice President, The Rabbinical Assembly.
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American Baptist Churches USA is a member communion of the National Council of Churches. Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for shared ecumenical witness among Christians in the United States. The NCC’s 37 member communions — from a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches — include 40 million persons in more than 100,000 local congregations in communities across the nation.