Episcopal Church Diocese in Michigan calls for stricter gun cont - WNEM TV 5

Episcopal Church Diocese in Michigan calls for stricter gun control

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The Episcopal Church is taking a stance on a hot-button social issue, signing its name on a resolution urging lawmakers to implement additional gun control.

"It's an intrusion on your Constitutional rights," said Lapeer County resident Walt Brock.

"We do need gun control," said Lapeer County resident Cindy Piehl.

It's a controversial move by members in the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan, which consists of churches in Southeast Michigan and the Lansing area.  The resolution calls for universal background checks on gun purchases, banning the sale of semi-automatic weapons, and making gun trafficking a federal crime.

"It is about getting those guns out of the hands of people who could hurt others," said Reverend Sue Rich, who oversees two Episcopal Churches in Lapeer County.

Rich calls the resolution the church's attempt to put smart gun laws in place.  Something she said is critical in crime-riddled areas like Detroit, Flint, and Saginaw.

"That's a big concern for a lot of us. So how do we, as a community, as a state, come together to make it safer for our people?" asked Rich.

The call for gun control changes is getting strong support from some.

"I think churches have a good point of view of what should be done in our world today," said Piehl.

But strong opposition by others.  Some claim the church is pushing liberal social issues rather than the word of christ.

"There's the old adage. If they outlaw firearms, only outlaws will have firearms. I mean it's just impossible to get them off the street," said Brock.

This resolution does not call for an abolishment of guns used for hunting.  Reverend Rich acknowledges the resolution may alienate some members, but believes it could draw in some ones.


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