New Social Justice–Oriented Bishop Receives Appeal From Jesus People for Animals: Please Preach Vegan!

PETA’s Christian Outreach Division Asks Bishop Curry to Include Social Justice for Animals in His Teachings

For Immediate Release:
June 30, 2015

Sophia Charchuk 202-483-7382

In the wake of the Episcopal Church’s historic election of its first African-American presiding bishop, Michael Curry, Jesus People for Animals—PETA’s Christian outreach division—sent a letter today to the new bishop congratulating him and urging to him to include “all of God’s creatures” in his call for compassion and justice by encouraging Christians to make compassionate, vegan choices in what they eat, wear, and buy.

“God’s creatures are suffering every day in the meat industry, where they are mutilated without painkillers, are crammed onto transport trucks, and have their throats slit in terrifying slaughterhouses,” says Jesus People for Animals Director Sarah Withrow King. “Jesus People for Animals is encouraging Bishop Curry to lead the way and show congregations around the world that we can help these animals every time we sit down to eat by choosing delicious vegan meals.”

To help Bishop Curry make the switch, Jesus People for Animals—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—also sent a gift basket full of tasty vegan snacks, including macaroni and “cheese,” veggie burger mix, vegan jerky, an oatmeal “cream” pie, and dark chocolate.

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Jesus People for Animals’ letter to Bishop Curry follows.

June 30, 2015

The Most Reverend Michael Curry
Presiding Bishop

Dear Bishop Curry,

I’m writing on behalf of PETA’s Christian outreach and engagement division, Jesus People for Animals, to congratulate you on your new position as the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church.

I have a request. You beautifully articulated the Christian call to justice when you said that there’s “a lot of suffering” but that “God has a dream and a vision for this world, and … Jesus has shown us how to follow him in the direction of that.” Would you please consider what a wonderful thing it would be if you reminded your congregation to remember all of God’s creatures in your call for compassion and justice and set a wonderful example for all followers of Jesus by joining me in returning to a Kingdom diet—that is, one that is free from the cruelty in today’s meat, dairy, and egg industries?

At this very moment, God’s creatures are suffering on severely crowded factory farms, in burning-hot transport trucks, and in blood-filled slaughterhouses, where wide-eyed animals watch in terror as other animals’ throats are slit. It’s like hell on Earth for the pigs who are castrated, the cows who are branded with hot irons, and the chickens who have part of their sensitive beaks seared off with a hot blade—all without any painkillers. In slaughterhouses, animals are hung upside down, their legs are slammed into shackles, and their throats are cut, often while they’re still conscious. Many will never have felt the warmth of the sun, formed friendships, roamed free, or done any of the other things that God intended for them.

There is a well-established precedent for including animals in the call for Christian justice and compassion. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s family—renowned for their challenge to the church to stand up against injustice everywhere—set a compassionate example when Coretta Scott King and Dexter Scott King went vegan, citing the lifestyle as a “logical extension” of Dr. King’s philosophy of nonviolence.

We hope that in your respected position as presiding bishop, you’ll shine a light on the routine abuse inflicted upon animals used for food and challenge the church members to help animals every time they sit down to eat—by leaving animals off their plates and substituting beans for beef, vegan wings for those made of real flesh, and almond milk for cow’s milk. I am sending you a vegan gift basket of foods that are tasty and life-affirming. Thank you for your service to the Kingdom of God. I look forward to hearing from you.

Respectfully yours,

Taylor D. Radig
Christian Outreach and Engagement Coordinator

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