Latest on Gun Violence Prevention

Pre-GA: Violence and values: The ACSWP report

by Leslie Scanlon
Presbyterian Outlook

Presbyterian minister James Atwood knows what it’s like to be shut down on the issue of gun violence.

A while back, while visiting a congregation in a community with multiple victims of a mass shooting, Atwood raised the question of how churches can get involved. “We shouldn’t be talking about that here,” one man responded hotly. “That’s a political issue, and it’s not appropriate for the church.”

That question – exactly how the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) should respond to the gun violence that claims 30,000 lives a year in the United States – will be put directly to the 219th General Assembly when it meets in Minneapolis in July. The Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy (ACSWP) is asking the assembly to consider a 20-page report from a study group that “challenges our society’s fatalism and numbness in accepting the highest gun death rates in the world.”

Convocation of Peacemakers Video

A great video of a great event!

Thank you to Andrew Patterson for his wonderful videography work!

Overtures on Gun Violence

The Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy (ACSWP) has included in its recommendations a resolution on Gun Violence, Gospel Values: Mobilizing in Response to God’s Call.

Click here to read the full resolution

Rise in Militia Groups, Meanness in Town Hall Meetings, and Tyranny

by Jim Atwood

Talking with Legislators about Gun Violence

by James E. Atwood

Gun violence across our nation and in our individual states is in large measure the direct result of irresponsible, even absurd laws that our elected public officials make or support. Below you will find a set of questions concerned citizens can ask their public officials in order to hold them responsible for laws they write or support that literally are the difference between life and death.

A key part of our work in Virginia to stop gun violence is to identify the stance of public officials who are making our state and local laws on guns. We are now working on a set of questions to identify the stance of our leaders on their views on guns. May I suggest that these questions are applicable for use in your state to address our ongoing gun violence problem.

Peace & Justice Hymns

The following hymns were written by PPF member Carolyn Winfrey Gillette.

This website has all of Carolyn's 150+ hymns:
http://www.carolynshymns.com/

Disarming teens’ gun violence

Churches, communities have key role in overcoming juvenile crime,
pastor and chaplain tell ACSWP

by Jerry L. Van Marter
Presbyterian News Service

BERKELEY, CA ― For George Cummings and Charles Tinsley, the escalating plague of violence in urban America is way too personal.

When Guns Become Idols

Also titled THE IDOLS OF POWER AND THE TOOLS OF VIOLENCE.

Preached at Stony Point Peacemaking Colloquium, "Gun Violence and Gospel Values"

by James E. Atwood

I’d like to expand on my contention that guns in America have become idols. I define America’s idolatry with guns as an aggressive belief system dedicated to the expansion of gun ownership which encourages people to take their guns to the workplace, college campuses, public schools, libraries, national parks, churches and bars. This belief system is enhanced by an attitude which overtly and subtly proclaims that safety and security come through guns. My friend, Rev. Rachel Smith calls this phenomenon “Gundamentalism” Although claiming the highest of social values, the belief system itself requires continuous deception and the distortion of the truth in order to minimize or ignore the 30,000 people who are killed by guns every year.

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