The Circle of Protection (CoP) is requesting a meeting with both presumptive 2016 U.S. presidential nominees to discuss their plans for assisting the poor and hungry at home and abroad.

The alliance of Christian ministers is sending letters today to both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

“We pray that, as you seek the office of president, the plight of hungry and poor people – around the world and in our own nation – has a strong claim on your attention. And we hope that you will share our vision of a world without hunger and poverty,” the letter states.

“People of goodwill can disagree about policy strategies, but little progress will be made unless our next president takes a strong leadership role in making that progress a priority.”

Baptist signatories include:

  • Leith Anderson, president, National Association of Evangelicals, and pastor, Wooddale Church, Eden Prairie, Minnesota;
  • David Emmanuel Goatley, executive secretary-treasurer of Lott Carey Baptist Foreign Mission Society;
  • Virginia Holmstrom, executive director of American Baptist Women’s Ministries, American Baptist Churches, USA;
  • Rubén N. Ortiz, Latino network leader of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship;
  • Robert Parham, executive director of the Baptist Center for Ethics;
  • James Perkins, president of the Progressive National Baptist Convention; and
  • Samuel C. Tolbert Jr., president of the North American Baptist Federation and the National Baptist Church of America Inc.

The Circle of Protection sent a letter in mid-January, signed by 100 Christian leaders, asking all presidential candidates for a three-minute video on what they “would do as president to offer help and opportunity to hungry and poor people in the United States and around the world.”

Eleven presidential candidates responded, providing short videos on their approach to ending poverty and hunger.

Three candidates failed to submit videos – Donald Trump, Rand Paul and Chris Christie.

“The biblical witness is abundantly clear about our moral responsibility to speak up for the poor and powerless. Asking presidential candidates to focus on lifting up the vulnerable is a straightforward initiative,” said Parham.

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