(This story is written by Missourinet St. Louis contributor Jill Enders)
A bill being debated in the Missouri General Assembly that would loosen gun restrictions is drawing opposition from a group of religious leaders.
Archbishop Robert Carlson joined other members of the clergy community during a Wednesday morning news conference at Catholic Charities in the Central West End to speak out against this proposal, which would allow individuals to carry concealed weapons into a place of worship.
“If the bill were to pass, churches wishing to remain gun-free would be required to post signage prohibiting guns in their sacred places. This is highly offensive to us and would violate our First Amendment rights to religious liberty,” Carlson said.
The current law allows Missourians to carry a concealed weapon into a place of worship if they get permission from their pastor or other religious leaders.
Carlson said if the bill becomes law, the Archdiocese would take legal action.
“Pastors, Rabbis and religious leaders should not be compelled by the government to place signage in our sacred places,” said Carlson. “Such a change would be a violation of our First Amendment rights.”
Reverend Mike Angell of The Episcopal Church of the Holy Communion, is calling on Missourians to contact Missouri House Speaker Todd Richardson to oppose this bill.
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