Hundreds of Faith Leaders to Hold March Urging Congress to Reject Trump's Immoral Budget Proposal

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 24, 2017

CONTACT:
Janine Walsh; walsh@franciscanaction.org; (203) 685-1856

Hundreds of Faith Leaders to Hold March Urging Congress to Reject Trump's Immoral Budget Proposal

Prominent ecumenical coalition call on House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to protect the vulnerable

Washington, D.C.-Hundreds of clergy and lay leaders from across the country will gather for a prayer vigil in front of the United Methodist Building, 100 Maryland Ave., NE, at 12 p.m. on Monday, April 24th, to urge Congress to reject President Trump's sinful and immoral federal budget proposal, which makes deeply destructive cuts to programs that address human needs in order to increase Pentagon spending.

Following the vigil, clergy will march to the Hart Senate Building, where they will kneel and pray in the atrium to draw attention to the magnitude of the harm this budget will cause vulnerable populations in our nation. Some participants, like Patrick Carolan, Executive Director of the Franciscan Action Network, will risk arrest.

The Christian clergy and lay leaders participating in the march are in the nation's capital for the Lobby Day of the 2017 Ecumenical Advocacy Days for Global Peace with Justice. Close to 1,000 Christians will participate in the EAD conference over the weekend, which is organized around the theme, "Confronting Chaos, Forging Community: Challenging Racism, Materialism and Militarism."

In the Christian tradition of fasting to petition God to respond to dire circumstances, Ecumenical Advocacy Days participants will fast from sunup to sundown on April 24.

Rev. Dr. Leslie Copeland-Tune, an organizer for Monday's public witness event, remarked, "The extreme nature of this proposed budget, which would cut funding for programs that help children, the elderly, those who have disabilities, and those protecting God's creation, to build walls and tanks that we don't need is sinful and immoral. It goes against our beliefs and values. We reject it. We say no to it. In fact, we say hell no to this sinful budget that would hurt the most vulnerable people in our nation!"

Doug Grace, Director of Ecumenical Advocacy Days, said, "It's important for us to send a strong message to Congress and the President that this budget is immoral, and we will do all we can to oppose it. We will not be silent or stand idly by while those most in need are harmed. We will not watch as families are ripped apart through mass deportations and our air and water are polluted because of corporate greed and deregulation."

WHEN:
Monday, April 24th, at 12 p.m.
WHERE:
United Methodist Building, 100 Maryland Ave., NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
WHO:
Rev. Dr. Susan Henry Crowe, General Secretary, General Board of Church & Society, United Methodist Church
Rev. Traci Blackmon, Executive Minister of Justice & Witness Ministries, United Church of Christ
Rev. Jimmie Hawkins, Director, Office of Public Witness, Presbyterian Church (USA)
Rev. Aundreia Alexander, Esq., Associate General Secretary for Justice and Peace, National Council of Churches of Christ USA
Mr. Patrick Carolan, Executive Director, Franciscan Action Network
Rev. Dr. Leslie Copeland Tune, Director, Ecumenical Poverty Initiative
Mr. Douglas Grace, Director, Ecumenical Advocacy Days
Rev. Noel Anderson, National Grassroots Coordinator, Church World Service
Bishop Jose Garcia, Senior Advisor for Prayer and Special Initiatives, Bread for the world
Rev. Dr. Timothy D. Boddie, General Secretary, Progressive National Baptist Convention

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