A local group of clergy and community members, growing alarmed by reports of increased gun violence, is taking action and is calling on the greater Nashville community to join the effort. Tennessee Loves Children (TLC), a new initiative focused on addressing the needs of children and other community members dealing with violence-related trauma, is kicking off on November 2 at Belmont University. The program centers around the book Children Under Fire: A National Crisis, by John Woodrow Cox, and will begin with a community session with the author.
The group, called Spiritus, began meeting virtually a few years ago. Spritus is sponsored by Belmont University’s Initiative for Jewish Engagement and is led by The Temple’s former senior Rabbi Mark Schiftan and Belmont University Pastor Jon Roebuck. The interfaith group meets regularly to discuss social justice, religion, family, and other issues on their minds. Members of Spiritus noticed a growth in reports of gun violence, gang wars, suicide, and school shootings, and began considering options for addressing the issue through study and action steps.
TLC is the result of those early Spiritus meetings. According to the group, local congregations, book clubs, organizations, and any venue where citizens want to explore the issue and join in working to find solutions, are invited to participate in the initiative. Groups can use a locally produced Book Discussion Guide, to help focus their efforts. In addition, the Nashville Public Libraries are partnering with TLC to offer these discussions in their branches. And the group will even provide interventions and strategies for “after the read.”
The kickoff author event, and meeting with Spiritus members, is November 2, 6:00-7:30pm at Belmont University. Refreshments will be provided, and space is very limited. Click Here to Register