Lifelines Live Free Sabbath March 2014
Our country faces a daily crisis of gun violence and mass incarceration. The loss of life will remain an imminent threat unless communities come together to speak out about the injustice. We are compelled by our faith to proclaim that the value of life among our young men has greatly been diminished. And people of faith have something to say about it! We are calling on everyone across the country to PREACH, PRAY and ACT to heal our nation.
This toolkit is designed to give Clergy and Faith Leaders action steps to implement in congregations and communities.
LIVE FREE Sabbath - Lead your congregation from the pulpit in prayer, reflection and worship on August 15-17, 2014.
Shape your pulpit messages around scriptures that allow congregants to understand better the theological implications for the injustice that pervades our community and what God is doing about it. Give a call for action that is grounded in a desire to please God and fulfill God’s plan for a just world.
Preach with young people in mind. Preach about what their faith teaches regarding life and living in accordance to the tenets of their beliefs. Preach hope; let them know that God loves them, believes in them and is preparing a world that will celebrate them.
Prayer Circles - Lead your congregation in prayer for our young people, their safety and the blessings of God’s grace and mercy for them, their families and their community.
Organize corporate prayer times within your congregation, your denomination and ministerial community. Center your prayers on God’s call that we act in support of the values central to our faiths – the values of love, life and community wholeness.
Start a prayer chain in your congregation and in the wider community that can unite congregations across faith, denominational, race and place lines. Encourage that we pray for God’s abundant love and peace for our communities and that that love be richly shared on our youth.
Pray for law enforcement and legal community that they hold in their hearts God’s command to always be just and prudent in their dealings with our young people and the communities where they reside.
Public Marches and Night Walks - Lead your congregation in Nightwalks and other organized efforts to move beyond the sanctuary. Take the message of hope to the streets and build a deeper concern for our youth and the sanctity of life.
Register to Vote – This is a movement that must be connected to the larger issue of transforming our country. LET MY PEOPLE VOTE is a campaign to get us involved in the political process. If there is a PICO federation near you, get involved. Align your congregation with the PICO Network, Lifelines To Healing Campaign and LET MY PEOPLE VOTE CAMPAIGNS.
LIVE FREE Sabbath Guide, .pdf, 1.9mb
LIVE FREE Clergy Guide, .pdf, 1.4mb
LIVE FREE Messaging Memo, .pdf, 204 kb
Additional Resources for Preaching and Teaching:
Becoming Visible Op-Ed, Pastor Michael McBride
Announcement template. Word Doc, 1 page, 70 kb
Various resources on gun violence prevention for faith communities from Heeding God’s Call, a faith-based organization working with religious communities in Pennsylvania, Maryland and DC.
Religion and gun violence resources from the Washington Theological Consortium.
Bishop Noel Jones-- Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath Sermon Clips
Fruitvale Station Interview with Director Ryan Coogler
Seeking Redemption: Private Prisons, Gov. Jerry Brown and All of Us, Op-Ed, Pastor Michael McBride
Let My People Vote: