Bishop calls for prayer following Charlottesville violence

Bishop Alan M. Gates issued the following statement and call to prayer on Aug. 12 following violence in Charlottesville, Va.:

We condemn the hatred behind Saturday's gathering in Charlottesville of white supremacists, neo-Nazis and other purveyors of bigotry, which is equally un-American and un-Christian.

We affirm, with the bishops of Virginia, that as followers of Christ "we have been entrusted with the ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) ... [and] cannot remain silent in the face of those who seek to foment division."

We pray with and for those who have sought to maintain peaceful witness in Charlottesville.  In the face of continuing volatility there, all congregations are urged to pray on Sunday for peace, and for the courage to maintain our gospel ideals in the face of racism, anti-Semitism and all forms of hate-mongering.

The Rt. Rev. Alan M. Gates