Canadian bishops offer prayers, solidarity following shooting
(Vatican Radio) The Most Reverend Richard Smith, Archbishop of Edmonton and President
of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), has sent a letter of sympathy
and prayers to His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York and President
of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, following the shootings this
past December 14 in Newtown, Connecticut.
Below is the full text of Archbishop
His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan President United
States Conference of Catholic Bishops Washington DC
behalf of the Bishops and all the faithful of our country, I extend our heartfelt
prayers and deepest sympathies on the recent horrible killings of 20 young children
and six adults in the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14. Please
convey to the families and community of Newtown, Connecticut, and to the Diocese of
Bridgeport and its parish of Saint Rose of Lima, our sentiments of sympathy and solidarity.
join with Americans and the rest of the world in lamenting this tragic moment. It
is not only the local community of Newtown or your own nation which is experiencing
such great loss and sorrow, but also the whole of North American society. Our culture
has become mesmerized and exploited by violence in its many dehumanizing and senseless
forms. Its victims are not only the dead, the wounded, their families and the citizens
of Newtown. Each of us has been injured and hurt: every heart by the images of human
suffering, every soul by the malice and cruelty at work in any act of violence.
communities around the world are preparing to celebrate at Christmas the Gift of Life
and Love. May God help our society in this tragic moment to be more respectful of
the sacredness of life, and inspire all communities in their determination to serve
and protect the common good.
We pray for God’s gift of healing and reconciliation
in Newtown and its surrounding communities. We pray also that the people of our two
nations discover a rebirth of love and a renewed appreciation for the gift and value
of each human life and every human family.
With the assurance of my prayers
for God's blessings upon your work and witness, I am,
Yours fraternally in
+ Richard W. Smith Archbishop of Edmonton and President
of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops