As the nation mourned the deaths of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims, many people sought leadership from the church to lead its congregants into a discussion about the culture of violence in the United States and steps that need to be taken in order to abolish it.
Priest Father Fred Daley, of All Saints Church in Syracuse, NY, decided to take action. He asked his congregants to donate their children’s violent video games and toys along with its receipt. Employees of the church took the video games and toys returned the items for a refund and used the money to support the families who were affected by the shooting in Newtown, CT. “We live in a nation that’s seeped in violence and the reality is we teach our children violence with toys we give them and the television programs we show them,” Daley told a local news station. “This is just one way that all of us can do something to move in a new direction. Instead of the status quo, business as usual, it doesn’t have to be this way.”
According to Kathy Meus, director of Faith Formation at the church, the charity involves a two prong donation: In addition to the returned items and money benefiting the families of the Sandy Hook tragedy, there will be a general donation of old toys to get rid of them.