Public Prayer Service for Healing and Unity in Charlottesville Today -- Call on Church Leaders to Offer Support, Urge All Churches, Especially Evangelical, to Denounce Hatred and Bigotry and Foster Peacemaking, Humility, Gospel of Love of Neighbor
National Clergy Council Representatives to Travel to Charlottesville.
Church leaders from Evangelical, Presbyterian, and Baptist denominations condemn terrorist murders, attempted murders, assaults with intent to kill, and menacing perpetrated by attacker using car as weapon of mass destruction. Call on all on pastors to lead their people to reconciliation and spiritual renewal.
Contact: Rev. Rob Schenck, National Clergy Council, 202-656-1252
WASHINGTON, Aug. 13, 2017 /Christian Newswire
/ -- In the aftermath of yesterday's violence and murderous act of terrorism amidst racist foment in Charlottesville, Virginia, spokespersons for the National Clergy Council, which represents church leaders from Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox, and Protestant church traditions, released the following statements:
"This was a despicable, atrocious, cowardly, and sinful act of mass murder and violence against innocent civilians. It's hard to imagine the level of hatred that propels an individual to commit this kind of terrorism. Religious voices across the spectrum, but especially evangelicals because of our disproportionate presence in the South, must condemn this heinous act unequivocally. It is a violation of the sanctity of human life, the commandment against murder, and the teaching and model of Jesus Christ. The church must respond vigorously to this supremely immoral episode, as we pray for those mourning, struggling to survive, recovering from their wounds, and traumatized. God help us in this deeply sad and tragic time in our nation's life." -- The Reverend Dr. Rob Schenck, evangelical minister, president of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Institute in Washington, DC, subject of Emmy-nominated documentary on gun violence, The Armor of Light
"The fomenting of racism, antisemitism, divisiveness, hatred, and contempt for fellow human beings is an insult to everything that makes America great. Our nation stands for the dignity of every human person, the rights of all, the equality of individuals and communities. What happened in Charlottesville is a human tragedy, a scandalous crime, and a terrifying precedent that puts many other communities at risk. The Bible says we reap what we sow. The nationalists and white supremacists sowed the seeds for the terrorist attack in Charlottesville. When you sow to the wind you reap the whirlwind. Let us pray for surviving loved ones, for the injured, and the fearful." -- The Reverend Dr. Suzan D. Johnson-Cook, Baptist minister, 3rd U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom, retired NYPD chaplain, and advisor to two presidents
"This is a heinous crime, a travesty, and a sad moment in American life and history. This kind of violence has no place in America or anywhere else. This was an act of terrorism and must be condemned, brought to justice, and eradicated. As a God-fearing country we cannot allow hatred, bigotry, or prejudice to stand. People of faith, leaders of faith communities, and all good people of conscience must speak out and take action now. We are calling on pastors, ministry leaders and representatives of faith communities of every kind to lead their people in prayer, call on their civic and political leaders to intervene, and take action themselves to bring healing and spiritual restoration to Charlottesville and our whole country." -- Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Presbyterian minister, National Director, The Christian Defense Coalition and pastor of The Church on the Hill, Washington, DC
Members of the National Clergy Council, including the Reverends Rob Schenck and Pat Mahoney, will lead a public prayer service and news conference today, August 13, 2017, at 4:00 PM, near the corner of Main and Third Street on the Charlottesville pedestrian mall.
The Reverend Rob Schenck heads the National Clergy Council, is a past chairman of the Evangelical Church Alliance, is a civilian chaplain to top government officials in Washington, DC, and is a senior fellow with the conservative-leaning Centre for the Study of Law and Public Policy at Oxford. He is the author of Costly Grace: A Journey of Faith and Politics (to be released by HarperCollins in 2018), a critical look at his 35-years as a leader in the religious right. He is also the subject of the Emmy-nominated documentary by Abigail Disney, The Armor of Light, which follows his challenge of the evangelical embrace of gun culture.
The Reverend Patrick J. Mahoney is a long-time nationally-known pro-life activist who has suffered numerous arrests and jailings for civil disobedience. He has also actively engaged to foster better Muslim-Christian relations. He played a major role in defusing tensions over the scheduled burning of Korans in 2010. Rev. Mahoney and Rev. Schenck successfully scuttled that burning and took 200 Korans into safe-keeping. Rev. Mahoney is National Director of the Christian Defense Coalition and pastor of Church on the Hill in Washington, DC.
What: Public Prayer Service and News Conference by the National Clergy Council of Washington, DC
Where: Charlottesville, Virginia, corner of Main and 3rd Street
When: Today, August 13, 4:00 PM
Contact: Rev. Rob Schenck of the National Clergy Council, 202-656-1252