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A Letter to the Congregation Following the Las Vegas Shooting

Dear Ones,

By now, many if not most of you will have learned about the shooting in Las Vegas, where an apparently lone shooter focused his hatred on hundreds of people who were enjoying a music festival. Nearly 60 people are reported dead as I write, over 500 wounded. Think of this like a rock thrown in a pond. In the next circle of are all those nearby, concert goers and others caught up in the immediate terror of the moment. Then come thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, whose lives have been personally torn apart by the actions of one man who we are told had at least 19 guns and a large amount of ammunition in his hotel room. And then there’s us, reading, reacting, weeping, perhaps raging, as we try to incorporate this new violence into our world. [Click "Read more..." to continue]

One thing appears clear from the facts known to date: this did not happen by accident. From everything we know, this massacre was planned, planned by a man whose neighbors and family refer to him as “just a normal guy.”

But this was violence enacted irrationally by one man with many high powered weapons.

Dozens are dead, hundreds wounded. Thousands directly traumatized.

For some reading this, this new rampage will open old wounds, including some that are barely healed.

Others will weep in inchoate rage, feeling at the same time frustrated, powerless and angry.

I know that, among those reading this email, is a wide diversity of opinions on gun control and/or limitations or restrictions on gun ownership. I ask that we not divert this tragedy into an argument about the Second Amendment or the various possibilities for restrictions that many believe are possible without abrogating the freedoms mandated by the Constitution. There is no one easy solution, no single law or response that can wipe this sort of obscenity from our national culture. Nothing is simple or easy in the hyper-reactivity of today. These conversations are necessary. They must be engaged, but today is not the time.

But there is one thing we can do. We can do it now. We can do it today.

I call on you, as I call on myself, to be a little kinder each person you meet, perhaps especially those with whom you disagree. Treat yourself gently, if only for the next few days. Allow your grief, your anger, your re-opened wounds, to receive the care they need.

If you would like to touch base, please This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Let us be gentle with one another in this hard time, for we never know what the next hour will bring.

With much love,

Rev. Maureen

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