Faith Leaders Stand Together In Calling on Congress to Fund the U.S. Government

October 1, 2013

Faith Leaders Stand Together In Calling on
Congress to Fund the U.S. Government

September 27, 2013

Dear Senator/Representative:

As leaders of faith communities and organizations comprising millions of people from all walks of life across our nation, we are deeply concerned by the completely avoidable budget and financial crises we are fast approaching as a nation.

Though Congress must pass the federal budget, it belongs to every American. This common fund formed of our combined tax revenues is designed to support the shared infrastructure, well-being, and long-term ethical values of our society. As people of faith we find it morally irresponsible to blockade the process by which we provide for our nation’s shared needs in a bid to force any individual legislative priority.

It would likewise be reckless to propel the United States into financial default by refusing to raise the debt ceiling for spending that Congress has already approved. Shuttering the federal government or defaulting on the nation’s financial commitments is likely to reverse our fragile economic recovery, punish the middle class, and deeply harm our most vulnerable neighbors.

Our democracy rests on principles of reason, compromise, and a commitment to the common good. To hold our governance processes and financial credibility hostage to narrow priorities is not only dangerous to the nation’s near-term financial well-being, it threatens the very foundations of our democratic process and our capacity to live united in community.

We ask that lawmakers address their concerns through the proper legislative channels. It ill serves our nation and people to stand in the way of funding federal operations or raising the debt ceiling in an effort to block implementation of health care legislation that Congress duly enacted. We ask that congressional leadership of both parties stand strong in opposing efforts to allow the will of the few to threaten the common good.

We commit to keeping you in prayer, asking that God continue to give you wisdom as you faithfully serve our nation during this time when the country most needs your principled leadership.

Sincerely,

Ruth Messinger
President
American Jewish World Service
 
Rev. David Beckmann
President
Bread for the World
 
Dr. Lester A. Myers
President
Center of Concern
 
Dr. Sharon Watkins
General Minister and President
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
 
Rev. John L. McCullough
President and CEO
Church World Service
 
Dr. Jack Sullivan
President
Disciples Justice Action Network
 
The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori
Presiding Bishop and Primate
The Episcopal Church
 
The Rev. Mark S. Hanson
Presiding Bishop
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
 
Rev. Linda Hanna Walling
Executive Director
Faithful Reform in Health Care
 
Sr. Margaret Magee, OSF
President
Franciscan Action Network
 
Diane Randall
Executive Secretary
Friends Committee on National Legislation
 
Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy
President
Interfaith Alliance
 
Dr. Sayyid Syeed
National Director
Islamic Society of North America
 
Rabbi Steve Gutow
President
Jewish Council for Public Affairs
 
Sr. Janet Mock, CSJ
Executive Director
Leadership Conference of Women Religious
 
Fr. Tim Mulroy, SSC
U S. Regional Director
Missionary Society of St. Columban
 
Salam Al-Marayati
President
Muslim Public Affairs Council
 
Sr. Gayle Lwanga Crumbley, RGS
National Coordinator
National Advocacy Center of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd
 
Jack Payden-Travers
Director
National Campaign for a Peace Tax Fund
 
Peg Birk
Transitional General Secretary
National Council of Churches
 
Nancy Kaufman
Chief Executive Officer
National Council of Jewish Women
 
Sr. Simone Campbell, SSS
Executive Director
NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby
 
Sr. Patricia Chappell
Executive Director
Pax Christi USA
 
Rev. Gradye Parsons
Stated Clerk of the General Assembly
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
 
Rev. Kip B. Banks
Interim General Secretary
Progressive National Baptist Convention
 
Rabbi David Saperstein
Director
Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
 
Sr. Patricia McDermott, RSM
President of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas
 
Rev. Jim Wallis
President
Sojourners
 
Rev. Peter Morales
President
Unitarian Universalist Association
 
Rev. Dr. William F. Schulz
President
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
Rev. Geoffrey Black, General Minister and President and
 
Rev. M. Linda Jaramillo
Executive Minister, Justice and Witness Ministries
United Church of Christ
 
Bishop Peter D. Weaver
Executive Secretary, The Council of Bishops
The United Methodist Church
 
Shan Cretin
General Secretary
American Friends Service Committee
 
Ecumenical Advocacy Days is a movement of the ecumenical Christian community, and its recognized partners and allies, grounded in biblical witness and our shared traditions of justice, peace and the integrity of creation. Through a high-impact national gathering weekend, EAD’s goal is to strengthen the Christian voice and to mobilize for advocacy on specific U.S. domestic and international policy issues.

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