Faith Leaders Summon Community to Stand Together
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- A group of local religious leaders have come together to ask all people to unite against threats, harassment and acts of violence in Lexington.
More than 65 religious leaders from a variety of faiths came together Thursday to publish a community summons in the Lexington Herald-Leader, asking people to unite in keeping Lexington a welcoming and inclusive city.
taking out a quarter-page ad in Thursday and Friday’s Lexington Herald-Leader, 69 faith and community leaders asked people to join them in building an atmosphere of respect and safety in the community.
“It includes Christian both Catholic and Protestant. It includes Jewish and Muslim and just this coming together, this sense that we are not divided,” said Dalene Vasbinder with Woodland Christian Church.
The group says President Trump’s recent executive order temporarily banning immigrants and refugees from some countries from entering the U.S. was one of their main reasons for publishing the summons.
“Because what happens is that the new presidency has gone forward to make this country a place that seems to be unwelcoming to everyone,” said Anthony Everett with Wesley United Methodist Church.
The group says they hope the ad combats that notion and shows people of all races, religions and immigration statuses that they are welcome in Lexington.
“We’re saying that human lives are important and we are each endowed with a particular dignity by the creator and and a communal dignity too,” said J.R. Zerkowski with St. Paul Catholic Church.
But the group wants to make clear that summons is not just meant for those who may feel marginalized.
“It’s not a declaration, it’snot just a sign on, it is a summons which means it is a call to everyone who’s seeing that, community summons for all of us, to come together to show respect and dignity and equality for one another and to work towards that,” said Marsha Moors-Charles with Bluegrass United Church of Christ.
This group is not the only one trying to make Lexington more inclusive, a petition calling to make the city a sanctuary city is only a few hundred signatures from making it to the mayor’s desk and a pro-immigration rally is scheduled for Sunday in front of the courthouse downtown.