News & Observer - Church conference in Chapel Hill examines gun violence

James Atwood was in a meeting with church elders after the Virginia Tech shootings that killed 32 people when he asked what the group was doing about gun violence.

The church was offering counseling and opening for prayer. The answer did not satisfy the theologian, but he didn’t argue. He’d objected before when he thought a church should do more, only to be told the church’s role was to deal with spiritual matters, not political.

“Why is it a political problem when each person that was killed (at Virginia Tech) was born in the image of God?” Atwood asked Saturday. “And each had a body that according to the New Testament was a living temple of the spirit of God?”

“How did gun violence become a political issue?” he asked.

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