Presiding Bishop Michael Curry led a weeklong Episcopal Relief & Development pilgrimage to Ghana focused on reconciliation, visiting cities and sites critical to understanding the trans-Atlantic slave trade, and Episcopal Relief & Development partners and programs that work to improve Ghanaians’ lives. Ghanaian church partners and ERD colleagues shared asset-based community development work with the pilgrims in the northern part of the country, and later traveled to the Cape Coast to pray and reflect on the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the work of reconciliation required of all of us as followers of Jesus. An estimated 12 to 25 million Africans passed through Ghana’s ports to be sold as slaves in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean.
Texas Governor Rick Perry opined a few days ago  that, had moviegoers in Lafayette, Louisiana, been allowed to bring their guns into the theater, they could have stopped John Russell Houser when he opened fire on July 23, 2015. The mentally ill like Houser should not have been able to get a gun, Perry said — the laws were not enforced.
The ministry of Bishops Against Gun Violence in The Episcopal Church is not confined to America. Firearm use in murders is widespread, and we all must respond to it. The shocking murder of the sister of the Bishop of Honduras, Natalie Lloyd, among other cases, proves this. The popular image abroad of the United States is that we are the land of the cowboy gunslinger. The high rate of homicides and suicides by gun, the increasing incidents of school shootings since Columbine, the worldwide publicity surrounding the Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown cases, and news stories of American parents starting children as young as three with real firearms, all contribute to this unflattering stereotype.