Office of the House of Bishops

Statement on Gun Violence

August 12, 2019

“Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; protect me from those who rise up against me. Deliver me from those who work evil; from the bloodthirsty save me.”  Psalm 59:1-2 NRSV 

We, the bishops of The Old Catholic Church, Province of the United States, in response to the violence that has once again shattered the hope and security in our communities, our neighborhoods, and our homes, extend our prayers to the victims, survivors and families of those who were killed or injured in the mass shootings that have taken place in Gilroy, California, El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio.

Violence triggers trauma, and trauma is an intense experience which shatters our fundamental understandings of life.  It takes a long time to reorient one’s life following a traumatic event and the process is complex, intense and exhausting.  We lift in our prayer, all those who are beginning the journey of recovery and reorientation following trauma.

We, who profess to follow in the steps of our Savior Jesus Christ must always hold in the ultimate regard the dignity and value of the human person.  We believe weapons of war, such as military style assault weapons, should never, ever be available to those who are not qualified and/or trained to own, operate and utilize such weapons.  We can think of no justifiable reason that military assault weapons should ever be available for sale to the general public. 

We call on Congress and all states, local municipalities, and towns to ban together and eliminate the sale of military assault weapons.  We also call on those same leaders to implement laws that will enhance the safety and security of all the lives of those who do own and bear arms;  laws that require background checks, ban excessive stock piling of ammunition and provide mental health counseling to any and all who would ever need such services.

We invite all peoples of every faith to join with us in praying for a culture of peace, and an ethos of healing and hope for all people.  In the name of Jesus Christ, we remain your servants,

Bishop Rosemary Ananis

Bishop Robert Fuentes

Bishop Michael Scalzi

Bishop Marty Shanahan

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