NHCLC President Rev. Samuel Rodriguez and Central California Chapter Director Chris Montelongo Speak out against Racial Violence in Fresno
FRESNO, Calif., April 20, 2017 – Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC), and Chris Montelongo, chapter director of the Central California NHCLC Chapter, made the following statement following the racially charged shootings of three men in Fresno, California, on April 18:
“The devastating news coming out of Fresno Tuesday continues to show the great racial divides and prejudices that are interwoven in our culture. There are many that harbor feelings such as a hatred, bigotry, violence and intolerance. While these events make us feel devastated and helpless, we believe it is possible to move out of this darkness and toward the light of love, truth and justice.”
“The key to moving past racial tensions is to recognize and emphasize the image of God, or Imago Dei, inherent within all individuals – regardless of race. As a part of that challenge, the NHCLC is committed to a Christian civil rights movement focused on life, religious liberty, racial unity and educational equality.
“This hate crime has shaken our city and community. However, we stand committed to combating careless violence and racial injustice through God’s unwavering love for all.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of these victims and the entire community in these coming days. Our prayer for you will be to turn on the light of love and forgiveness. For when light stands next to darkness, light always wins.”
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The NHCLC serves as a representative voice for the more than 100 million Hispanic Evangelicals assembled in over 40,000 U.S. churches and hundreds of thousands of additional congregations spread worldwide throughout the Spanish-speaking diaspora. Seeking to reconcile evangelist Billy Graham’s message of salvation with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s march of prophetic activism, the NHCLC emphasizes “7 Directives” of Life, Family, Compassionate Evangelism, Stewardship, Justice, Education and Youth. For additional information, visit http://www.nhclc.org.
FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Julie Shutley, 972-267-1111