Search
Close this search box.

Saving Lives: Ending Gun Violence

Who We Are

Ways to Get Involved

This interfaith ministry group comes together to raise their voices against gun violence. They host in-person events and days of advocacy to create awareness, foster dialogue, and inspire action toward a safer future for all. Through engaging discussions, powerful conversations, and thought-provoking presentations, we will explore the urgent need for change in our communities. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of the movement for a safer world.

Deacon Anne Flynn and The Rev. Barbara Seras are leading formation efforts on behalf of the Task Force. Both have visited churches within our diocese presenting information on Anti-Gun Violence efforts, tailoring their presentation to the individual needs of each church/rector. They would welcome more volunteers to help with giving presentations and more parishes willing to host presentations.

There is much more work to be done. Gun safety bills are slowly moving through the legislature. Our prayers and advocacy efforts are needed to ensure passage of key legislation that can reduce access to guns by criminals and mentally disturbed persons. while ensuring the rights of gun owners to act responsibly.

The Saving Lives Task Force meets on the third Tuesday of each month by ZOOM at 7 pm. The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at 7 pm.

With One Voice is having an organizational meeting on Thursday February 22 at 10 a.m.

To join the Saving Lives by Ending Gun Violence task force, email The Rev. Jennifer Mattson.

To become involved in the statewide interfaith With One Voice coalition, please email the The Rev. Martha Harris.

Advocacy Working Group

If you’re interested in serving on the Advocacy working group, please respond to The Rev. Martha Harris

Prayer Circles

Recognizing the Power of Prayer, the Prayer Circle Group is asking each parish in the Diocese of Central Pennsylvania to participate in a combined effort to lift up in prayer individuals within the Diocese who have been adversely affected by Gun violence.

If interested, please provide a parish email contact that the Prayer Circle Group may use to committee contact Don Baldwin.

Past Events in 2023

PA Episcopal Bishops Call to Action

March 6, 2023
PA State Capitol
The Rt. Rev. Audrey Scanlan hosted a press conference in the Main Rotunda of the Pennsylvania State Capitol at 3 p.m. on Monday, March 6, and presented and discussed her stance against gun violence as described in a recently published letter from the five Pennsylvania Episcopal bishops.

The five bishops published a letter on February 23, 2023, entitled “With One Voice: Seeking Peace in Our Commonwealth.” Within the letter, the bishops acknowledge the pain and tragedy that gun violence has caused in our communities and our state. In addition, the letter notes their support of the following legislation:

  • One Handgun A Month limitations
  • Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPO)
  • Prohibition on sales/possession of assault weapons and large-capacity ammunition magazines
  • Prohibition on sales/possession of ghost guns

Days of Interfaith Prayer & Action

May 20, 2023
Community Cook-out in Lancaster
St. Thomas, Lancaster

This extraordinary gathering was the vision and dream of Lindsey Martin, a local survivor of gun violence, this event was supported in part by our Shaped By Faith grant, which helped to provide much of the food that fed over 300 people. Children and youth enjoyed a variety of games (with prizes like fish in bowls!!!). Heeding God’s Call was also present with a deeply moving Memorial to the Lost, t-shirts with the names of loved ones lost to gun violence in Lancaster in the past two years (the youngest victim being 2 months old). It was profoundly moving to stand together with hope that things can and WILL change- when we stand together with one voice, in God.

CeaseFirePA-logo

March For Our Lives: PA Advocacy Day

Thursday, March 23rd, 2023
PA State Capitol | Harrisburg, PA

This event was held on Thursday, March 23rd, and involved a March for Our Lives Rally and Advocacy Meetings with Legislators & Training, which called on the new gun safety majority in the House to act.

Days of Interfaith Prayer & Action

With One Voice: End Gun Violence Now - Nov. 14 & 15

This impactful event was held in Harrisburg, PA, and helped us come together to raise our voices against gun violence. The in-person gathering had multiple events that helped to create awareness, foster dialogue, and inspired action towards a safer future for all. Engaging discussions, powerful conversations, and thought-provoking presentations were had and we explored the urgent need for change in our communities.

Together, we can make a difference and work towards a society free from the devastating effects of gun violence. 

Committee Contacts

Co-Chairs of Saving Lives: The Rev. Jennifer Mattson & Bishop Scanlan

Chairs of Sub-Committees
Liturgy:  The Very Rev. Dr. Amy Welin, Dean of the Cathedral

Prayer Circles:  Mr. Don Baldwin, St. Thomas Episcopal Church

Advocacy:  The Rev. Martha Harris, Priest-in-Charge, St. Luke’s Mount Joy, St. Paul’s Columbia

Formation: The Rev. Barbara Seras, St. Paul’s, Manheim
The Rev. Anne Flynn, Deacon

Children/Youth:  The Rev. Jennifer Mattson

In 2023, for the state of Pennsylvania alone, 110 people have lost their lives due to gun violence, and an additional 331 people have been injured, according to the Gun Violence Archive. The Episcopal Church has long called for an end to the gun violence epidemic, asking local, state, and national governments to limit the ownership, sale, and use of firearms and to limit the availability of weapons.

Table of Contents