SACRAMENTO, Calif., July 11, 2016 – Following an unprecedented week of racial violence across America, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC) is today calling churches nationwide to become agents of peace and to rise up and become a light to the world, standing as "a bright city on a hill," as commanded by Jesus in Scripture.
"We live in dark times. The events that led to the deaths last week of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile and five law enforcement officers in Dallas showcase the evil and chaos that is prevalent in our world," said Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of NHCLC. "As we begin a new week, now is the time to turn away from the darkness of hatred, bigotry, violence and intolerance and turn toward the light of love, truth and justice."
As a part of that challenge, NHCLC is calling for churches to "be light," by working with African-American pastors and churches in their corresponding communities to address issues and concerns while simultaneously constructing a preventive multi-ethnic firewall against disparities in law-enforcement practices and emphasizing the image of God, or Imago Dei, inherent within all individuals – regardless of race.
"We can either spend days, months and years condemning the darkness or with convicted deliberation we can turn on the light of love and forgiveness," said Rodriguez. "For when light stands next to darkness, light always wins."
Additionally, beginning this fall, NHCLC will launch the National Christian Leadership Conference, a multi-ethnic, Christ-centered, Bible-based coalition committed to a Christian civil rights movement focused on life, religious liberty, racial unity and educational equality.
NHCLC/CONEL is the world's largest Hispanic Christian organization, which 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. For additional information, visit http://www.nhclc.org.