VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 1/16/13)—A month after the shooting in a Newtown, Conn., elementary school, American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) continued its gun control advocacy yesterday when Curtis Ramsey-Lucas, ABHMS managing director of Resource Development, joined representatives of various faith-based organizations in a press conference at the United Methodist Building, Washington, D.C. Sponsored by Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence, the event marked release of a letter to President Obama and Congress signed by 47 religious leaders, including ABHMS Executive Director Dr. Aidsand F. Wright-Riggins III.
The letter calls on political leaders to do the following:
• require all gun purchasers to pass a criminal background check;
• make high-capacity weapons and ammunition magazines unavailable to civilians; and
• declare gun trafficking a federal crime.
Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence is a coalition of denominations and faith-based organizations united to confront America’s gun violence epidemic and to rally support for policies that reduce death and injury from gunfire. Its formation announced on Martin Luther King Day 2011, the coalition has grown to 40 groups representing millions of Americans in faith communities across the United States.
In December, Ramsey-Lucas joined a gathering of faith leaders in honoring the victims of the shootings in Newtown and speaking against gun violence at an event sponsored by the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism at Washington National Cathedral.
In addition, Wright-Riggins offers a personal message regarding gun violence via a video posted on ABHMS’ website, and a Dec. 21 letter from American Baptist Churches USA’s national and regional leadership to Congress and the president calls for a ban on semi-automatic assault weapons and a restoration of funding for mental health services.
Join the Interfaith Call in Day to Prevent Gun Violence on Feb. 4 to encourage swift Congressional action and to share your commitment to addressing the culture of violence in America. Additional details will be shared in coming days on ABHMS’ website and Facebook page.
American Baptist Home Mission Societies—the domestic mission arm of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA)—ministers as the caring heart and serving hands of Jesus Christ across the United States and Puerto Rico through a multitude of initiatives that focus on discipleship, community and justice.
American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with over 5,200 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.