On Wednesday, March 22, Milwaukee's Albright UMC had the opportunity to not only live out directives laid down for us in our Book of Resolutions, but also stand at the forefront of churches throughout Milwaukee by working with the Milwaukee Police Department to offer a presentation on firearms safety to those in our community. Albright sits in one of the districts of Milwaukee that has faced some of the highest numbers of gunshot injuries and deaths. With a large percentage of these victims being innocent children, education has become a critical need. Police Officer J.D. Belongia, an instructor from the Milwaukee Police Department, kept the information flowing with an inspiring mix of humor, anecdotes and statistics. The event ended with those attending being given cable gun locks to secure any weapons they have at home. "If classes like this can save the life of only one child, they are worth every minute of the work that goes into offering them," Albright UMC member Lynne-Hines Levey said.

Albright will continue to lead the way for joint programming with the Milwaukee Police Dept. as the officers will be offering a class called "Educate 2 Empower" on Saturday March 8. This is the adult version of the old STOP program that had been offered at high schools in the past. It's an interactive, 2-hour class during which the 20-25 registrants will learn how, when, and why the police do what they do, and what one needs to do when interacting with the officers of the law to avoid unfortunate (or even dangerous) misunderstandings. The group will be limited to 20-25 to allow for greater interaction. This will, like the Firearms Safety class, be the first offered anywhere in Milwaukee. There are still other community class offerings under development, so the future looks like Albright may be a very active place as time goes on.