We at the Interfaith Council are devastated about the killing of eight people in the Atlanta metro area on March 16. On behalf of all eleven of our faith traditions, we extend our deepest condolences to the families and friends of the deceased. We also lift up the Asian-American community in particular, who lost six of their own last night. Whatever the motive for these particular crimes, we are painfully aware of the rise in hate crimes against Asian-Americans, particularly women, over the past year.
Earlier today, it came to our attention that the suspect was raised in a Christian church. All of our faith traditions — including Christianity — are opposed to violence, and we condemn the use and abuse of religion for these ends. We may not yet know what (if any) role religion played in the suspect’s motivation, but each of our traditions teaches that the solutions to our problems must be sought through peaceful means.
We call on Americans of all religious backgrounds to work toward a world in which people of every religious background may feel welcomed, respected, and appreciated. We’re doing that work in and around Washington, DC, and we encourage you to do the same wherever you are.
– Rev. Dr. David B. Lindsey, IFC Executive Director