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South Carolina Episcopal bishop responds to Charleston shooting

South Carolina Episcopal bishop responds to Charleston shooting

A message from the Right Reverend Charles G. vonRosenberg, Bishop of the Episcopal Church in South Carolina:

The unimaginable tragedy at Emanuel AME Church calls for prayer, response, and self examination.

In our prayers, may we remember the victims, their families, the community of faith that is Emanuel, the wider communities of faith in the AME Church, and our society so prone to violence.

As paths of response, may we seek and develop avenues of racial conversation and reconciliation; may we refuse to accept things as they are in our world; and may we strive for the vision of peace offered by Jesus himself.

In terms of self examination, may we not neglect our own complicity in an environment of polarization and suspicion, and may we respond with sincere and profound confession to God, who loves us all.

I commend these possibilities for prayer, response, and self examination.  An excellent guide on this way is St. Francis, who wrote these words in his familiar prayer (Book of Common Prayer, page 833):

Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is
hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where
there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where
there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where
there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to
be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is
in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we
are born to eternal life. Amen.

The bishop planned to attend a prayer service scheduled today at noon at Morris Brown AME Church.

Posted by Cara Ellen Modisett


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John Chilton

Bishop Mark Lawrence of the breakaway diocese also has a statement.

Bishop Waldo of the Diocese of Upper South Carolina has a statement as well.

Professor Christopher Seitz

The 59 year old Myra Thompson was killed, whose husband is an ACNA/REC Priest in the area.

Prayers for him and all the victims’ families.

Geoff McLarney

Prayers indeed. And I am bound to acknowledge that it is to the credit of the REC that its “Negro” (as was) missions flourished at a time when segregation and marginalization were the order of the day in most southern Episcopal dioceses.

Dorian McGlannan

All of us are sickened by this abhorrent crime against humanity. I hope and pray that the South Carolina Episcopal churches get actively involved in this situation and that a fund of some sort is established to provide financial assistance to the families of the victims. I am grateful the bishop has taken the lead.

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