Top Gun Violence Public Health Experts to Discuss Effective Ways for Communities to Reduce Gun Violence

Oct 19, 2013, 14:08 ET from Children's Defense Fund

Beating Swords into Plowshares: Blacksmiths to Turn Confiscated Guns into Gardening Tools

WASHINGTON, Oct. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Children's Defense Fund and Washington National Cathedral are hosting a forum on ending the gun violence epidemic at 10:10 a.m. on Sunday, October 20, 2013 followed by a Children's Sabbath Service at 11:15 a.m. with a sermon by Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children's Defense Fund.

To symbolize the theme of the Children's Sabbath celebrationBeating Swords into Plowshares: Ending the Violence of Guns and Child Poverty, blacksmiths will turn illegal guns confiscated by the police into garden tools starting at 12:45 p.m. The transformation is meant to capture anew the biblical vision that speaks to our longing for a time when all children and families will know physical and economic security. These illegal guns will be transformed into life-affirming garden tools which will be used in community gardens to grow healthy food for families.

Marian Wright Edelman and Dean Gary Hall of the Washington National Cathedral will kick off the forum, a panel of experts on gun violence prevention who will discuss the impact of gun violence on children, families and communities and the roles faith communities and others can play in reducing gun violence.

Forum speakers include Dr. David Satcher, former U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Mark Rosenberg former director of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, and Dr. Thomas McInerny, President of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Dr. Rosenberg and Dr. Satcher led the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) efforts to fund groundbreaking research showing that a gun in the home increased the risk of violence. The National Rifle Association and its friends in Congress then blocked funding of future government research into the prevention of gun injuries and fatalities.

We hope you will join us in person at Washington National Cathedral (3101 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, Washington, DC) for these events which are free and open to the public, but if you can't be there in person plan to join us virtually – the Forum and Worship Service will be live-streamed and also posted after the event on the homepage of the National Cathedral at


10:10 a.m. Forum on Protecting Children, Not Guns featuring Dean Gary Hall, Marian Wright Edelman, Dr. David Satcher, Dr. Mark Rosenberg, and Dr. Tom McInerny

11:15 a.m. Children's Sabbath Worship Service with Marian Wright Edelman

12:45 p.m. Blacksmiths transforming confiscated guns into garden tools


Sunday, October 20, 2013 
10:10 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.


Washington National Cathedral 
3101 Wisconsin Avenue, NW (intersection of Massachusetts and Wisconsin Avenues, NW) 
Washington, DC 20016-5098


Marian Wright Edelman 
President, Children's Defense Fund

Gary Hall 
Dean of the Washington National Cathedral

Dr. David Satcher 
Director of the Satcher Health Leadership Institute, Morehouse School of Medicine 
Former U.S. Surgeon General and Assistant Secretary for Health

Dr. Mark Rosenberg 
President and CEO, The Task Force for Global Health 
Former Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control and Assistant Surgeon General

Dr. Tom McInerny 
President, American Academy of Pediatrics 
Professor and Associate Chair for Clinical Affairs, Department of Pediatrics, University of Rochester Medical Center and Golisano Children's Hospital

Gina McDade  
Board member, Newtown Action Alliance

Nardyne Jefferies 
Mother of 16 year old Brishell Jones, gun violence victim in Washington, DC

Patti Hassler 
VP Communications, Children's Defense Fund, sister of Pamela Jean Hassler Groff, victim of domestic gun violence in Quarryville, PA

About the Children's Defense Fund

The Children's Defense Fund Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities.

About the Washington National Cathedral

Washington National Cathedral is called to be the spiritual home for the nation. It seeks to be a catalyst for spiritual harmony in our nation, renewal in the churches, reconciliation among faiths, and compassion in our world.

Contact: Raymonde Charles 
Children's Defense Fund 

SOURCE Children's Defense Fund