FCC Bristol works to stop Gun Violence

On March 5, 2024, faith leaders from across all of Rhode Island's denominations gathered at the State House to make a joint statement to state legislators about the urgent and morally imperative need to pass current proposed legislation in support of the safe storage of weapons and a ban on assault weapons. FCC Bristol minister, the Rev. Dr. Nancy Hamlin Soukup, was among this impressive group.  Parishioners Sue and Tony Morettini numbered among the organizers, as volunteers in the Rhode Island Chapter of Moms Demand Action.  Parishioner State Representative Susan Donovan joined fellow legislators and other FCC Bristol congregants in the audience in support of the legislation.

Because surrounding states including Massachusetts and Connecticut have banned the sale of assault weapons, Rhode Island has become the “go to” state for the purchase of these weapons of mass killing.

Ministers spend their lives looking for the words that will move people to do the right thing. It is so impressive when one hears such a condensed outpouring of eloquence coming from 13 faith leaders. Among the powerful words from all of the ministers, the Rev. Elizabeth Lerner Maclay, senior minister at the First Unitarian Church of Providence, stated: “for those who ignore or resist these bills, your choices are undemocratic. They are irresponsible. We are not willing to wait for the mass deaths of our children, our congregants, our families, our people … to the unstoppably vicious and powerful projectiles of an AR-15 … and then pass this legislation.”

Rev. Soukup’s remarks drew upon one of her February sermons, holding up the words of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. regarding the necessity of joining love to power, recognizing the power of love, in the quest for change.

The statement signed by Rhode Island’s faith leaders, along with Everytown for Gun Safety and other advocates, calling on all Elected State Executive and Legislative Officials, and all Citizens of Rhode Island to uphold the universal truth that human life is a sacred gift of God and to pass gun-safety legislation this session, was read out. It stated, in part:

“We, the undersigned, and all those who stand with us, together and today proclaim that gun violence in our nation is a grave injustice that has caused the appalling loss of hundreds of thousands of innocent lives and inflicted insufferable pain on millions more.

“When these tragedies occur, we often send our thoughts and prayers…. It is not enough,” the statement said.

“It is, indeed, our moral obligation to take action to stop the needless horrors wrought by the many forms of gun violence…. those who die by gun suicide … [and those] murdered, wounded and scarred in spaces we have long thought were safe: places of worship, schools, shopping malls, roads, theaters, grocery stores.”

Many members of the press were present. Channel 12 televised a segment on this event during their evening news on March 5.

Newcomers’ Class Welcomes All

For several weeks in March, all members of FCC, especially those who are new to the congregation, have been invited to join the Newcomers’ Class. It meets in the Library in the Sunday School wing after worship on Sundays. It is essentially a UCC 101 during which we look at the history of our denomination, its theology, its practices, and issues facing our churches today. We met on March 3 to discuss how the UCC developed historically. On March 10, we will consider some of the innovations the UCC has brought to our faith lives. On March 17, you have a chance to meet those involved with FCC ministry committees, who will discuss the work they do on behalf of our congregation. For those who are not members, this is an opportunity to have an introduction to UCC life.


This is going to be fun!!

Everyone is invited. What could be better than eating macaroni & cheese and playing board games with everyone at FCC Bristol on a winter’s evening?


Seniors had a bunch of fun!

February 21 was the day of FCC Bristol’s annual Senior Luncheon, hosted by the Deacons Committee. More than 40 senior members and friends of the congregation gathered at noon to catch up, share stories, give thanks and enjoy a delicious meal provided by CP’s Catering of Bristol.

Everyone was especially happy to see our dear friend Sue, whose unexpected presence made everyone grateful. Another member whom we were so glad to see was Mike. Our members from the “Atria Aquidneck contingent” — Anne, Charlotte, Grace and Bob — were also mobbed with friends who wanted to hear their latest news and just spend some time with them. They follow us on-line each Sunday with our live-stream services, but we wish we could visit with them in person more often.

Many thanks to the Deacons for all their loving efforts to plan this fun fellowship event. We are grateful for any time we can get together — an even more so when there is yummy food provided.