Coalition Against Gun Violence & Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara HOST AN INTERFAITH VIGIL • WED., DEC. 4th • 6-7pm • Unitarian Society Sanctuary, 1535 Santa Barbara Street
Wednesday, December 4th at 6pm, in recognition of the 2019 Annual National Vigil for Victims of Gun Violence, Rev. Julia Hamilton, the Unitarian Society and the Coalition Against Gun Violence, are hosting an Interfaith Vigil including Santa Barbara faith leaders of multiple traditions in the sanctuary of the Unitarian Church to honor victims and families of gun violence. Clergy from diverse faiths will say prayers in their tradition. Photos and music will embellish the ceremony. A BELL will be tolled as every loss is remembered. The focus is a re-dedication and a renewed call to action to reduce violence in this season during which we often speak about peace. Together, each in our individual lives, we will dedicate ourselves to holding peace in our hearts, and extending outward our spirituality with thought and action. Both a Santa Barbara City Proclamation and a County Resolution will be presented and read at the Vigil. Write-In postcards – “#HonorWithAction” – will be available for attendees to urge Congress to support gun violence prevention legislation.
December 14, 2019 marks the 7th anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shootings when 20 children and 6 staff members were shot down. Since that tragic day in Newtown, more than half a million Americans have been killed or injured by guns. This year, 43,000+ lives were lost to gun violence. The Santa Barbara community is joining with the Newtown Alliance in a national vigil to remember and honor the lives lost to the ongoing epidemic of gun violence in America, and specifically to honor the victims and families of the Sandy Hook Elementary School, Goleta Post Office, Isla Vista, including all school shootings (22 so far in 2019), and all American veterans. Together, we will renew our vow to #HonorWithAction to #EndGunViolence.
Multiple events will take place nationwide during the month of December, coinciding with a national vigil service of mourning and remembrance at Saint Marks Episcopal Church, Wash. DC. Wednesday, December 4th, coordinated by the Newtown Foundation in partnership with Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence, and multiple gun violence organizations across the nation.
All those gathered will be invited to participate in CAGV’s traditional Bell Ceremony “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” Any member of the audience who has lost a family member or a friend to gun violence is welcomed and encouraged to come up, say the name of their loved one and toll the bell as we remember all victims of gun violence in respectful silence.
Members of the Santa Barbara faith community will also be memorializing this event in their various congregations during the weeks of Dec 4th – 15th. Throughout December, hundreds of communities nationwide will participate to shed a light on the epidemic of gun violence plaguing our communities as we are all affected by gun violence.