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Letter From Newtown

Letter From Newtown

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Published by Helen Bennett
A letter signed by 12 Jewish, Christian and Islamic leaders from Newtown, accompanied by more than 4,000 names added though grass-roots organizing websites, in support of a bill requiring federal background checks in nearly all gun purchases.
A letter signed by 12 Jewish, Christian and Islamic leaders from Newtown, accompanied by more than 4,000 names added though grass-roots organizing websites, in support of a bill requiring federal background checks in nearly all gun purchases.

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Published by: Helen Bennett on Mar 12, 2013
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Standing with the Clergy of Newtown:A Letter to the U.S. Senate from American Religious Leaders
More than 4,000 religious leaders from across the country have joined the clergy of Newtown, Conn., insigning the letter below to U.S. senators asking for gun violence prevention legislation.
United States SenateCommittee on the JudiciaryWashington, D.C. 20510 Dear Senators,
 It’s been less than three months
since our community experienced the unspeakable tragedy of themurder of children and educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School. As the clergy leaders of Newtown, joined by clergy colleagues from across the nation, we havewitnessed the scourge of gun violence in our neighborhoods, and we call on Congress to passcomprehensive gun violence prevention legislation that will help stop the slaughter.The moral mandate to protect the weak in our care is clear and present in all of our faithtraditions. Our varied faith traditions teach us to seek the peace of the city, to love our neighbor,and to cherish human dignity. To see the rising incidence of gun violence from Chicago to Newtown, Camden to Aurora, Detroit to Tucson
and how that violence particularly targets the
 young and the poor, especially in America’s urban communities
- and yet to refuse to take thesteps we know would reduce harm is a violation of religious values so severe that we arecompelled to speak out. Nothing any of us do will bring back the victims murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School. As anation we must do all we can to prevent the next tragedy. We pray that you will vote for meaningful gun violence prevention laws that include a ban on assault weapons and high capacitymagazines, enforceable universal background checks, an end to gun trafficking and prosecution of straw purchasers. After the news crews and cameras leave, after the rest of the nation turns away and resumes their normal routines, it is we who are asked to answer why this happened; to bind up thebrokenhearted; and to explain why nothing in Newtown or our many communities will ever be thesame again. As faith leaders, while we fully support laws that we believe will increase gun safety, we alsobelieve that the larger underlying issue behind violence is spiritual: how we view our obligationsto each other in light of our role in God's creation. We draw from a wellspring of tradition that will spark off a spiritual awakening in America that will transform us into a culture of compassion, reconciliation and civility. As faith leaders, we commit ourselves to fostering aculture of peace to complement and serve as a foundation for any proposed gun legislation.The slaughter of innocence in Newtown awakened our nation to the tragedy of gun violencethroughout our land and we shall neither slumber nor sleep. Rather, by tireless commitment,
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loving hearts and the sustaining promise of our many faiths, we believe that Newtown shall beremembered as the bridge to a new and kinder world. Rabbi Shaul Praver, Congregation Adath Israel of Newtown, CT  Rev. Matthew Crebbin, Newtown Congregational Church, UCC, Newtown, CT  Rev. Kathleen Adams-Shepherd, Trinity Episcopal Church, Newtown, CT Chaplain Eman Beshtawii, Al Hedaya Islamic Center, Newtown, CT  Azeez Bhavnagarwala, Al Hedaya Islamic Center, Newtown, CT  Rev. Mel Kawakami, Newtown United Methodist Church, Newtown, CT  Rev. Leo E. McIlrath, Lutheran Home, Southbury, CT Khatib Mohamed El Safty, Al Hedaya Islamic Center, Newtown, CT  Rev. Jane Sibley, Newtown United Methodis tChurch, Newtown, CT  Rev. Jim Solomon, New Hope Community Church, Newtown, CT  Rev. Janice Touloukian, Newtown Congregational Church, UCC, Newtown, CT  Monsignor Robert Weiss, St Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church, Newtown, CT 
The names below are shown in alphabetical order by last name, as collected by the followingorganizations: PICO National Network, Sojourners, the National Council of Churches, AuburnSeminary.Rev. Ann Aaberg, Mystic, CTRev. Pamela Abbey, Pittsburg, CAPastor Daniel AbbottRev. David AbbottRev. Jim Abbott, Bryan, TXRev. Douglas Abbott, Wilton, CTImam Aslam Abdullah, Las Vegas, NVRev. Mark Abernethy, South Windsor, CTRabbi Steven Abraham, Omaha, NECantor Stephen Abramowitz, Peabody, MARabbi Jerome Abrams, Canton, MAMs. Aliza Abrams, New York, NYCantor Nancy Abramson, New York, NYLois AcetoRabbi Rachel Ackerman, Chevy Chase, MDMr. David Ackert, Sandy Hook, CTRev. Andy ActonRev. Holly Adams, Norwalk, CTRev. Patricia Adams Oberbillig, Des Moines, IARev. Dawn AdamyRev. Michael Ader, Coventry, CTRabbi Benjamin Adler, Rockaway, NJRabbi Esther Adler, Saint Paul, MNDr. John Afman, New Haven, CTRev. Kevin Agee, Dewitt, NYImam Senad Agic, Mt. Prospect, ILRev. Dr. Dean Ahlberg, Redding, CTPastor Albert AhlstromBishop Laura AhrensPastor Tim AhrensRev. Carol Ahrens, ILRev. Dr. Jeff Aiken, Allentown, PAPastor Katie AikinsRabbi Rachel Ain, New York, NYDr. Leslie Aiuto, Great Neck, NYRabbi Isidoro Aizenberg, New York, NYMrs. Shaheen Akhtar, Framingham, MASr. Aisha Al-Adawiya, New York, NYImam Abu Qadir Al-Amin, San Francisco, CAMr. Nicholas Albares, New Orleans, LAPastor Mary Albing, Minneapolis, MNRev. Dr. Robert Albritton, Wendell, NCRev. Rebecca Albritton, Wendell, NCProf. Daniel Alder, New York, NYMrs. JoAnne Alderfer, Williamsville, NYMs. Saba Alemayehu, Bellingham, WACantor Joanna Alexander, Marlboro, NJProf. Paul Alexander, King of Prussia, PARabbi Aaron L. Alexander, Bel-Air, CADavid AlgerTonny AlgoodMr. Syed Ali, Plano, TXRev. Rev. Dr. Judy AllbeeMrs. Nancy Alleman, Harrisburg, PAThe Rev. Nathan Allen, Broken Arrow, OKPastor Mark Allen, Pawling, NYThe Rev. Carol Allen, Chicago, ILCantor sheri allen, Fort worth, TXRev. Dr. Peter Allen, Hingham, MARabbi morris allen, Mendota Heights, MNRev. Dr. Nanxy Allison, Charlotte, NCDeborah Alllen
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Rev. Steve AllmanRev. Thomas AllsoppMs. Shantha Alonso, Silver Spring, MDRabbi Robert Alpert, Penn Valley, PARev. George AltRabbi Steven Altarescu, Bronx, NYRabbi Joel Alter, New York, NYRabbi Renni AltmanRev. Dr. Eileen Altman, East Palo Alto, CARabbi stuart altshuler, London, CARev. Diane Amarillas, Novato, CARev. Dr. Brian Ammons, Asheville, NCRev. George Anastos, Englewood, COPastor Deborah AndersenRev. Clela AndersonRev. Fred AndersonPastor Kathleen AndersonRev. Jane AndersonRev. Rev. Martha AndersonRev. Eric Anderson, Hartford, CTthe Rev. marjo andersonCTRev. Acqunetta Anderson, Washington, DCMr. Martin AndersonILRev. Fred W, Anderson, Fiskdale, MARev. Shirley Anderson, Charlestown,, RIPastor Michael D Anderson, Mason, MIRev. Dr. David K Anderson, Eau Claire, WIThe Rev. marjo anderson, bridgeport, CTRev. Yohann Anderson, San Anselmo, CARev. reb anderson, muir beach, CARev. Daphne Anderson, Maywood, ILRev. Celeste Anderson, Richmond, VARev. Cheryl Anderson, Washington, CTRev. Robin Anderson, Alexandria, VARev. Neal Anderson, Reno, NVPastor Judith Anderson-BauerRev. Suzanne Anderson-HurdleThe Rev. Yuri Ando, East Hampton, NYRev. Susumu Ando, Wading River, NYRabbi Ronald Androphy, East Meadow, NYCantor Dana AnesiPastor Jessica AnschutzRev. Jessica Anschutz, Central Valley, NYRev. Dr. Jim Antal, Framingham, MARev. Michael Aparo, Wethersfield, CTFr. Louis Arceneaux, c.m., New Orleans, LARev. Keith Archuleta, Antioch, CAPastor Heather ArcovitchEvangelist Greg Ardito, Pipersville, PARev. Dr. Verne Arens, Burke, VARabbi Ramie Arian, White Plains, NYMs. Merri Lovinger Arian, NYC, NYRabbi Charles Arian, Gaithersburg, MDRev. Elaine Armstrong, Portland, ME, MEPastor Elizabeth Armstrong, Angels Camp, CARev. Virginia Army, Vernon, CTPastor Andy ArnoldSr. Sr.Margaret Ann ArnoldRev. Talitha Arnold, Santa Fe, NMRabbi Noah Arnow, Voorhees, NJRev. Lois Artis, Silver Spring, MDExecutive Admini Amalie Ash, pompano beach,FLPastor Pamela Ashley, Kansas City, MORev. Larry Ashley, Oakland, CAMr. Nayeem Aslam, Carol Stream, ILPastor David AslesenDr. abdul cader asmal, needham, MARev. Aqueelah As-Salaam, Snellville, GADeziRae AstleJay AtkinsonRev. Dr. James and Roxana Atwood,Springfield, VARev. Frederick Atwood-Lyon, Durham, NHMrs. marian augustine, collegeville, PAPastor Jerry Austin, Chicago, ILMinister Jessica Austin, Durham, NCRev. Dr. Stephen Austin, Newington, CTCantor Deborah AveryRev. Debra Avery, Oakland, CABr. Manuel Avilés, OFM Cap., Washington,DCMrs. Norma Aviles, Tampa, FLRabbi Vicki Axe, Greenwich, CTCantor Ilana Axel, Hoffman Estates, ILCantor Matthew Axelrod, Scotch Plains, NJJoAnne Axtell, Duluth, MNRev. Rick Axtell, Danville, KYMrs. Julia Ayala Harris, Tallahassee, FLPastor Marilyn AyerRev. Jane Ayers, Worton, MDSr. Connie B.Rabbi Elan Babchuck, Providence, RIRev. Katharine Babson, Brunswick, MERev. Marie Bacchiocchi, Inwood, WVRabbi Andy BachmanRev. Ed Bacon, Pasadena, CADr. M. Affan Badar, Plainfield, INPastor Brian Baeder, West Woodstock, CTPastor Brian Baeder, West Woodstock, CT

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