You’re Invited


The Children’s Defense Fund and Washington National Cathedral invite you to join us on Sunday, October 20th for a forum on ending the gun violence epidemic at 10:10 a.m., followed by a Children’s Sabbath Service at 11:15 a.m. with Marian Wright Edelman preaching. We hope you will join us in person at Washington National Cathedral (3131 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., 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

To symbolize the theme of the day, Beating Swords into Plowshares: Ending the Violence of Guns and Child Poverty, blacksmiths will turn illegal guns confiscated by the police into garden tools.  Come to the Cathedral grounds to watch the transformation take place and capture anew the biblical vision that speaks to our longing for a time when all children and families will know physical and economic security.

Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund and Dean Gary Hall of the Washington National Cathedral will kick off the forum, a panel discussion with experts on gun violence prevention who will discuss the impact of gun violence on children, families and communities, and the role different communities – in particular faith communities – can play in reducing gun violence. Join us, live or virtually, to learn how you can help reduce gun violence among children, teens, families, friends, and communities.

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. Come find out how we can protect children, not guns, and end the public health crisis and moral crisis of child gun deaths in our nation. 

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. Following this important discovery, the National Rifle Association and its friends in Congress blocked funding of future government research into the prevention of gun injuries and fatalities.

Attend the Gun Violence Prevention Forum:

Speakers include:

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. Thomas 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

Watch as Illegal Guns are Transformed into Garden Tools
You’re invited to join us on the Cathedral grounds after the forum as blacksmiths turn police confiscated guns into garden tools in a modern-day interpretation of the biblical passage about beating swords into plowshares. These illegal guns will be transformed into life-affirming garden tools that will be donated to community gardens to grow healthy food for families.

Participate in the Children Sabbath Service
At 11:15 a.m. the Children’s Sabbath worship service with a sermon from Marian Wright Edelman will begin, lifting up in prayer, music, and readings about God’s call to seek justice and protect children with urgency and persistence. These events are being held as part of the 22nd annual multi-faith National Observance of Children’s Sabbaths, Beating Swords into Plowshares: Ending the Violence of Guns and Child Poverty, being celebrated throughout the weekend in places of worship across the country. For more information and to find out how your place of worship can join in, visit

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