Pastor Paige Eaves of the met with several religious leaders in the Occupy LA Interfaith Leaders Support Network, a growing ad hoc group now comprising of more than 200 diverse clergy and lay leaders throughout Greater Los Angeles.
The delegation met with Mayor Villaraigosa and Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck Monday morning to talk about peaceful and respectful process for the encampment at City Hall; ways to sustain the message in Los Angeles as the camp closes; and how the mayor can intensify major themes of the national Occupy movement.
The group hopes that Villaraigosa will use his clout to address halting home foreclosures, reverse corporate "personhood," the need to fully enforce the Dodd-Frank law and gain federal and state tax revenue to support municipal services in Los Angeles.
"The mayor, who serves as president of the National Council of Mayors, pledged to do his best to rally his colleagues in these policy arenas," according to a news release from the Occupy LA Interfaith Leaders Support Network. "He expressed his appreciation and respect for the Occupiers here, and he echoed clergy leaders in highlighting the power of nonviolent civil disobedience for the sake of righteous causes."
Faith leaders thanked Los Angeles police for showing restraint outside City Hall but said they will hold the department accountable if they observe abuses.
No further formal meetings are scheduled, but the interfaith group will work informally with city officials, labor leaders and others in the Occupy LA movement.
Numerous religious leaders have been in the encampment last night and today, urging nonviolence and showing their solidarity with the movement's larger goals.