Las Vegas bishop leads interfaith prayer service following shooting

Las Vegas bishop leads interfaith prayer service following shooting

Las Vegas bishop leads interfaith prayer service following shooting

People mourn during an interfaith memorial service Oct. 2 in Las Vegas for victims of a shooting spree directed at an outdoor country music festival late Oct. 1. A gunman perched in a room on the 32nd floor of a casino hotel unleashed a shower of bullets on the festival below, killing at least 59 people and wounding another 527. (Credit: CNS photo/Lucy Nicholson, Reuters.)

Following the deadly massacre that killed 59 people and injured more than 500 others, Bishop Joseph Pepe led an interfaith prayer service at Las Vegas's Cathedral of the Guardian Angels where he issued a plea for unity and peace. "Where there is hatred and violence we must be the sign of love and of peace. Where there is division and uncivil speech, we must stand together as a sign of unity," he said.

NEW YORK — Following the deadliest shooting in United States history, Bishop Joseph Pepe of Las Vegas hosted an interfaith prayer service on Monday evening to mourn the 59 dead, to pray for the more than 500 injured, and plea for national unity.

“In the face of tragedy we need each other,” said Pepe.

On Sunday evening, a 64-year-old gunman, later identified as Stephen Paddock, opened fire at an outdoor concert in Las Vegas. The bloody massacre has prompted an outpouring of messages and prayers from religious leaders throughout the world, including Pope Francis.

RELATED: Pope Francis sends prayers to victims of Las Vegas massacre

As he delivered his tearful remarks, Pepe told the diverse crowd of over 800 individuals, “in the face of violence we stand together because we cannot let hate and violence have the last word.”

“We come together in unity across our religious traditions, across race, across gender to stand with each other as living signs of that hope,” said Pepe.

The bishop used the interfaith gathering to encourage people of different faith traditions to serve as an example of unity in a world marred by division.

“In a world that is increasingly polarized we need to be a countersign,” he said. “Where there is hatred and violence we must be the sign of love and of peace. Where there is division and uncivil speech, we must stand together as a sign of unity.”

In light of the violent attack in Las Vegas, Pepe acknowledged the suffering taking place throughout the world and pleaded for an end to violence.

“Tonight as we gather to pray for healing and unity in our community of Las Vegas, I am reminded of all the places throughout the world who suffer daily violence,” he said.

“We must find ways to work together to bring about healing in our world so that none of God’s children have to suffer what we have suffered.”

The bishop also used his remarks to express his gratitude for the first responders, hospital and other medical providers, and all individuals of goodwill who immediately responded to the tragedy.

“They are living reminders of the Good Samaritan and God who calls us all from fear to care,” he said.

The prayer service was held at the Cathedral of the Guardian Angels in Las Vegas, coincidentally on the feast day of the guardian angels, October 2.

Related Post

Your own personal guided tour of Mother Teresa’s Rome Art historian and Rome connoisseur Elizabeth Lev offers her Top Five list of destinations for pilgrims making their way to the Eternal City for the Se...
Young people to be more than study subjects in upcoming synod “Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment” is the theme for the next Synod of Bishops, set to be held at the Vatican in October 2018, and judging from ...
Young people are dreamers like St. Joseph, pope says at morning Mass Joseph "takes God's promise and brings it forward in silence with strength," the pope said during morning Mass at Domus Sanctae Marthae. "May he give ...

Latest Stories

Most Read

Latest Stories

Related Post

Your own personal guided tour of Mother Teresa’s Rome Art historian and Rome connoisseur Elizabeth Lev offers her Top Five list of destinations for pilgrims making their way to the Eternal City for the Se...
Young people to be more than study subjects in upcoming synod “Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment” is the theme for the next Synod of Bishops, set to be held at the Vatican in October 2018, and judging from ...
Young people are dreamers like St. Joseph, pope says at morning Mass Joseph "takes God's promise and brings it forward in silence with strength," the pope said during morning Mass at Domus Sanctae Marthae. "May he give ...