Gun Violence Prevention

A Call to Address Gun Violence

While we are painfully aware that more than 100 Americans die each day from guns, the recent spate of mass shootings in this country has again heightened our sense of urgency to take action to stem the tide of gun deaths.  As an initial response in 2019, First Presbyterian Church Ann Arbor produced the following statement to serve as a guide for our congregation to address this societal scourge with prayer and potential action.  

Please read the statement below and consider how you might help in this cause.

First Presbyterian Ann Arbor Commitment to Reduce Gun Violence

We, as members of First Presbyterian Church, in an effort to model the love and the care of Jesus Christ in the world, commit ourselves to work actively to increase the respect and sanctity for life in our community and across our nation.  We hear Jesus’s call to us to be peacemakers and lift up this special concern as we pray, worship, study and take action together in the world to reduce gun violence.

We believe we should love our enemies and follow the commandment, “Thou shall not kill.”  We will pursue peace through non-violence. We are called to love and bear one another’s burdens without fear, without judgment, without resentment, without enabling, without condemnation and without guilt.  We are called to generously share God’s grace with all people.

We agree that as Christians, we will work to diminish fear and violence.  We will work to increase our love and safety in a Christian community that allows for differences and opinions.  We are not of one mind about the appropriateness of owning or carrying handguns for personal safety.  We acknowledge that this discussion is not about guns used for hunting or shooting sports.

As a Christian community, we commit to supporting our neighbors and caring for one another.  We commit to welcoming, protecting, and educating our congregation and community.  We commit to providing a safe place of worship.  We commit to continual prayer for an end to gun violence.

We commit to providing a safe place of worship
We commit to educating our congregation and community
We commit to working in partnership for action and advocacy
We commit to continual prayer for an end to gun violence

Link to PCUSA Resolution-Gun Violence-Gospel Values, Mobilizing in Response to God’s Call:

https://www.pcusa.org/site_media/media/uploads/acswp/pdf/gun-violence-policy.pdf

Click here to read about the Soul Box Project Exhibit "This Loss We Carry" at Grand Rapids ArtPrize.  This Exhibit is a national community art project designed by artist Leslie Lee. It is made of handmade, origami “Soul Boxes” folded and embellished by people all over the U.S. to visualize the scale of the U.S. gunfire epidemic. GRAND RAPIDS ARTPRIZE 2021.

Click here to Take Action on Background Checks

Click here for more Resources for Gun Violence Prevention

For more information on how you can get involved, please email the Social Justice Action Group at sjag@firstpresbyterian.org