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State Religious Leaders Pray For Gun Violence Resolution

The service included the signing of a petition urging Indiana lawmakers to enact stricter gun laws.

Faith Leaders

Photo: Brandon Smith

Leaders from a number of faiths joined together Thursday to rally for an end to gun violence like the shootings a week ago at a Connecticut elementary school.

Indiana faith leaders and anti-gun violence advocates are calling for action in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting.

Christ Church Dean Stephen Carlsen, who hosted a Thursday prayer service at the downtown Indianapolis cathedral, said he wanted people to leave there comforted…but not comfortable.  All of the speakers, including Sikh interfaith leader K.P. Singh say the country can no longer afford to wait for action in helping curb gun violence.

“I think it demands from us, each of us that we try to put aside our party differences, put aside our ideologies, think and do this as an act of humanitarianism,” Singh says.

Stephen Dunlop is the president of the group Hoosiers Concerned About Gun Violence.  He says what separates this incident from others – and what gives him hope that real reform is now possible – is the nature of the victims.

“I think people who were willing to look away or rationalize or in some other way evade the consequences and meaning of these previous events find it impossible when it’s little children,” he says.

Dunlop circulated petitions at Thursday’s service calling on the Indiana General Assembly to examine both the scope of gun violence in the state and its relationship with mental illness and to explore steps to help reduce the problem.

Brandon Smith

Brandon Smith has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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