Bishop Weaver responds to shootings in Texas, Ohio

August 6, 2019

Dear Sisters and Brothers of the Virginia Conference,

   Following the tragic mass killings of this past weekend, I write to you again in the name and spirit of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who once again weeps over our nation and the cities of Dayton and El Paso saying, “If you, even you, had only recognized today the things that make for peace.”  (Lk. 19:42)
   Following the shootings in Virginia Beach two months ago, I called for us, even us, as United Methodists (1) to “mourn with those who mourn” and share the Good News that, in Christ, death does not have the final word, and (2) to join our witness and actions with those committed to ending hatred, bigotry, racism, violence and recognizing, today, “the things that make for peace.”
   You, even you; I, even I; us, even us; are called by Christ to ask: (1) what initiatives we can take to create a cultural moral commitment to “Thou shall not kill” in our family, town., nation? (2)  How can we more effectively be more aware of and care for mental illness, enact sensible gun legislation, reject the glorification of violence in the media, and be sensitive to the signs of stress building in friends, co-workers, and neighbors? (3) How can our own conversation, conduct, and congregation connect with others to affect change?
   It is needed today, not tomorrow.  It is for you and I, not others. It is about Jesus, not just politics. Let the weeping stop, and the peace of Christ begin.
In Christ’s name,
Peter D. Weaver

Click here to download a pdf of Bishop Weaver's message.


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