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Responding to Gun Violence

Every day, 100 Americans are killed with guns and hundreds more are shot and injured. Firearms are the second leading cause of death for American children and teens. In Virginia there were over 1000 firearm deaths in 2017. Approximately two-thirds of firearm deaths in Virginia were suicides. (Sources: CDC; VA Dept. of Health) The effects of gun violence extend far beyond these losses—gun violence shapes the lives of millions of Americans who witness it, know someone who was shot, or live in fear of the next shooting.

Members of St. Andrew’s are continuing to seek ways that we can address gun violence and its effects on our lives and our community. Here we will share resources, ways you can take action, and upcoming events at St. Andrew's and across our community.

For more information on this effort, contact Karen Merritt, merrik01@msn.com, or Merrill Hemmert, merrillhemmert@verizon.net.

Upcoming gatherings and action alerts

Responding to Gun Violence meeting
Sunday, November 17, 4 p.m. in the St. Andrew's parish library
A group is meeting to continue working on ways we can take action individually, as a faith community, and in collaboration with others in our city. If you are interested in joining this effort or would just like to learn more, please join us on Sunday, November 17 at 4 p.m. in the Parish Library. For more information contact Karen Merritt, merrik01@msn.com, or Merrill Hemmert, merrillhemmert@verizon.net.

Longest Night Service
Saturday, December 21, 5:30 p.m. at Hilton Christian Church
Hilton Christian  Church invites you to join them for their Longest Night Healing Service. The season of Advent and Christmas comes in the midst of winter when the nights are long and days are short and often gloomy.  This can weigh heavily on our spirits.  Christmas is meant to bring cheer, but it so often reminds us of all that we have lost and thus adds to the gloom.  We can feel guilty about the sadness we feel; it can feel like we are unfaithful. The Longest Night service is offered in recognition that all is not as we wish it were; we have hurts and griefs; we need healing.  This service begins in relative darkness, but brings light.  There will be opportunities for quiet reflection, anointing for healing, lighting candles of remembrance, and fellowship with those who share our desire for light and healing. This service will be held starting at 5:30 pm on Saturday, December 21 in the sanctuary of Hilton Christian Church.

Prayer Vigil
Sunday, January 26, 4 p.m. at St. Andrew's
All are welcome to join us as we pray for the victims, their families, our community and nation, and for an end to gun violence.

Prayer Vigils

Prayer Vigils are held quarterly. Click here for the bulletin from the October 20, 2019 service.

Our next Prayer Vigil will be held on Sunday, January 26 at 4 p.m.


Bishops Against Gun Violence - a network of nearly 100 Episcopal Church bishops, urging our cities, states and nation to adopt policies and pass legislation that will reduce the number of people in the United States killed and wounded by gunfire.

Episcopal Public Policy Network - a part of the Episcopal Church's Office of Government Relations, representing the church's public policy positions. Provides action alerts and numerous resources.

Everytown for Gun Safety - nonprofit organization which advocates for gun control and against gun violence.

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America - a grassroots movement of Americans fighting for public safety measures that can protect people from gun violence.

The Brady Campaign - organization working for gun violence prevention, founded by former White House Press Secretary James Brady and his wife, Sarah.

Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence - policy organization, co-founded by gun violence survivor Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, dedicated to save lives from gun violence by shifting culture, changing policies, and challenging injustice.

The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence - develops and advocates for evidence-based solutions to reduce gun injury and death in all its forms.


Last Published: November 20, 2019 7:45 AM