Faith leaders hold vigil for 78 victims of gun violence

Indianapolis Area Crime

INDIANAPOLIS — Sunday evening, faith leaders held a candlelight vigil in honor of the lives lost due to gun violence this year including those at the FedEx facility.

Dozens of members of the Butler- Tarkington community along with faith leaders with lit candles gathered outside of the governor’s home calling for change and action when it comes to gun violence.

“Let’s get guns out of people hands — let’s make it safe. Specifically, we’re advocating, we’re here at the governor’s mansion and we’re calling for gun violence to be declared a public health crisis,” said Fairview Presbyterian Church Pastor Shawn Coons.

That’s the pressing message coming from multiple congregations in the Butler-Tarkington community. It’s so pressing that they took their voices from the parking lot to the governor’s home.

“It’s time for us to take action. Thoughts and prayers are no longer sufficient. We believe that as people of faith we are called to put our faith into action,” said Christian Theological Seminary’s VP of Academic Affairs Leah Gunning Francis.

They want to be able to walk freely and prevent the numbness from spreading throughout the community.

“I’m a parent, I’m a neighbor, I’m a community member and involved with children around the area, and yes, they are traumatized,” said Gunning Francis.

Those are the 78 lives that have been lost this year. And they’re calling for change before that list grows even longer.

“Any loss of life is tragic. When it’s a loss of life that can be prevented, it’s even more tragic and we all bear some responsibility especially when it comes to gun violence,” said Coons.

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