The Catholic Review is committed to a safer Baltimore City, and is asking its readers to support its sponsorship of a “Gun Turn-In Day” at St. Gregory the Great Parish Sept. 12.
Since organizing its sixth gun buy-back in March 2008, St. Gregory the Great had been wanting for funding. A grant from The Catholic Review will make next month’s possible, and the Archdiocese of Baltimore paper is challenging readers and all members of the community to contribute to a fund that will allow the program to continue.
Parish staff members and volunteers will accept weapons Sept. 12, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the church on 1542 N. Gilmor St. in West Baltimore.
The process is anonymous, with no questions asked. The program offers a $100 reward for each working automatic or semi-automatic handgun or assault rifle, and a $50 reward for any other working gun turned in. At the conclusion, guns are turned over to Baltimore City Police.
“The police have verified that some of these weapons that have been turned in have been very lethal,” said Monsignor Damien G. Nalepa, the pastor of St. Gregory the Great, “and we believe that the removal of one gun makes a difference.”
Previous gun buy-backs at St. Gregory the Great have netted more than 100 guns.
Christopher Gunty, associate publisher/editor of The Catholic Review, said the newspaper chose to become a partner in the gun turn-in because the church’s presence in the community can be helpful to building peace.
“We wanted to help St. Gregory the Great, and the whole community. We encourage our readers to become involved as well, by getting to know about the issues and supporting this program if they are able.
“Each contribution can help take a gun off the street and pave the way for peace,” Gunty said.
Tax-deductible donations can be sent to: The Cathedral Foundation Inc., Attn: Catholic Review Gun Buy-Back, P.O. Box 777, Baltimore, MD 21203.