Local pastors rally for gun control in Olympia

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Hazel Dell — The Rev. Brooks Berndt of the First Congregational United Church of Christ continues his mission of social justice activism. He trained for and ran a marathon while carrying a child's backpack that symbolized the seven children killed by gun violence every day in the United States.

On Jan. 30, he joined many others who gathered on the steps of the state Capitol in Olympia to support Initiative 594, which would expand gun sale background checks to include gun shows and the Internet.

"I couldn't bear the thought of my 2-year-old daughter growing up in our society without my trying to make it safer for her. This legislation would literally save lives," said Berndt.The Rev. Jessie Vedanti of St. Anne's Episcopal Church in Washougal participated too. The event was called "Running for Our Lives."