Our mission is to meditate on, educate about, and advocate for gun violence prevention in the non-violent spirit of Jesus.
ENGAGE works through ELCA congregations to facilitate respectful, Christ-centered conversations on gun violence prevention.
What does an ENGAGE event include?
ENGAGE events can be tailored to a congregation, but typically consist of:
- Welcome message by your congregation’s clergy and/or Rev. Ron Letnes
- Reminder to participants to commit to civil discourse
- Centering song, litany, and prayer
- People sharing personal stories about gun ownership and gun violence
- Biblical reflection on weapons and violence
- Review of gun violence statistics in Minnesota, the U.S., and globally
- Panel discussion on gun safety, the Second Amendment, and perspectives on the NRA
- Consideration of possible actions and strategies to reduce gun violence
- Invitation to join ENGAGE
- Sending song and benediction
“Wow! I keep getting favorable comments on your presentation. The good news is that people are still talking about what we can do. Through your ENGAGE presentation, they have been given permission to talk about gun ownership and gun violence prevention. Thank you for all the time and effort you put into it. I especially appreciated your willingness to adapt the format, trusting that I knew my forum attendees and what works. We want to do a follow up. ”
~ Pastor Tim Bernard of Lutheran Church of the Resurrection
“I believe our conversations are effective because we use a variety of approaches–theological, ecclesialogical (position of the ELCA), and practical. Many of our presentations include people that own and shoot guns. We acknowledge both the right to own guns and the right to be safe in our communities. We talk about gun safety, share statistical evidence, and include an honest discussion on the positives and negatives of the NRA. We honor the spirit of the Second Amendment while honoring the Holy Spirit. Congregations are responding positively, and remain grateful for the chance to open hearts and minds on ways to reduce gun violence.”
~ Rev. Ron Letnes, retired, Our Savior’s Lutheran Church
Ready for an ENGAGE conversation in your congregation? Contact us