Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will join other faith leaders and elders in Washington, DC to launch the Reclaiming Jesus Declaration at a church service followed by a silent candlelight vigil to the White House on Thursday, May 24.
All are invited to attend the event, beginning at 7 pm Eastern at the National City Christian Church, 5 Thomas Circle NW, Washington DC. At the Church Service, Presiding Bishop Curry will join 10 other faith leaders and elders in prayer and preaching.
Following the church service, at 8:30 pm an estimated crowd of more than 1000 will follow Presiding Bishop Curry and the faith leaders and elders as they process from National City Christian Church to the White House.
“The church service, the procession to the White House, and silent candlelight vigil is planned in response to the moral and political crises at the highest levels of political leadership that are putting both the soul of the nation and the integrity of Christian faith at stake,” noted the Rev. Jim Wallis, President and Founder, Sojourners. “The elders call upon all Christians to remember that our identity in Jesus precedes every other identity.”
In the Declaration these leaders write;
“When politics undermines our theology, we must examine that politics. The church’s role is to change the world through the life and love of Jesus Christ. The government’s role is to serve the common good by protecting justice and peace, rewarding good behavior while restraining bad behavior (Romans 13). When that role is undermined by political leadership, faith leaders must stand up and speak out. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state.”
It is often the duty of Christian leaders, especially elders, to speak the truth in love to our churches and to name and warn against temptations, racial and cultural captivities, false doctrines, and political idolatries—and even our complicity in them. We do so here with humility, prayer, and a deep dependency on the grace and Holy Spirit of God.”
You can read the whole of the Reclaiming Jesus Declaration here.
The service at the National City Christian Church begins at 7 pm Eastern. The procession to the White House begins at 8:30 pm Eastern. The silent candlelight vigil is expected to begin at 8:45 pm to 10 pm Eastern.
The Episcopal Church Office of Communications will livestream the church service, procession and silent vigil. The livestream is available here.
Religious Leaders and Elders
The religious leaders and elders represent many Christian traditions – evangelical, mainline Protestant, Roman Catholic, and African-American churches.
Including Presiding Bishop Curry, others participating in the church service and vigil will be:
- The Rev. Dr. Walter Brueggemann, Professor Emeritus, Columbia Theological Seminary
- Dr. Tony Campolo, Co-Founder, Red Letter Christians
- The Rev. Dr. James Forbes, President and Founder, Healing of the Nations Foundation and Preaching Professor at Union Theological Seminary
- The Rev. Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, General Secretary Emeritus, Reformed Church in America
- The Rev. Dr. Richard Hamm, former General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
- Fr. Richard Rohr, Founder, Center for Action and Contemplation
- Dr. Ron Sider, President Emeritus, Evangelicals for Social Action
- The Rev. Jim Wallis, President and Founder, Sojourners
- The Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins, Director, NCC Truth and Racial Justice Initiative
- Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner, Co-Convener, National African American Clergy Network; President, Skinner Leadership Institute
Preregistration for participation in the church service, procession and vigil is not required; however, participants are encouraged to mark their attendance on Facebook here.