Statement by Sandy Point Community Churches on recent gun-related violence/shooting

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We, the members of the Sandy Point Community Churches join with our community here in Sandy Point to express our concern about this frightening phenomenon of increasing gun violence resulting in the injury, maiming, and death of too many of our young people. In our respective congregations and from our pulpits, we have consistently spoken out about it, as have our sisters and brothers in virtually every other faith tradition in other communities across the Federation of St Kitts-Nevis. It is clear that our voices have not been persuasive in themselves and our actions too limited to stem the tide of gun violence in general, and here in Sandy Point in particular. There is a growing trend where the frequency of the proclamation of the Gospel in our community is being crowded out by the uncomfortably increasing retort of gunfire.

The Sandy Point Community Churches are deeply concerned about crime in our community in particular, and the value of any life impacted, or taken through and by criminal activity and/or elements. We believe all human life is sacred and created by God and therefore, we call upon all of us to see all human life as significant and valuable. We believe the murder of any person denies the power of Christ to redeem, restore and transform all human beings. Indeed, all of us have been made in the image and likeness of Almighty God. It is in the name of God our Creator, Jesus the Christ and the Holy Spirit, our Comforter, that we offer our prayers for the victims of shootings and we pray especially for the families in our community who have impacted, especially those who have lost loved ones through senseless gun violence. We extend our prayers and commiserations with our grieving community members in the name of the Triune God, “…who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves received from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:4)

All of us as residents of the Sandy Point community have a duty to respect one another, respect ourselves, respect the laws of St Kitts-Nevis and respect the sanctity of life by refraining from violence and by being willing to accept the costs of disobedience. We neither encourage nor condone any form of violence as a legitimate exercise of vigilante justice. We call on all of us to remember that each one of us is subject to the judgment of God.

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