A sign outside an east end Toronto home expresses the sentiments of the entire nation for the 22 Nova Scotia shooting victims. Mickey Conlon

Canada’s bishops stand united with the people of Nova Scotia

By 
  • April 30, 2020

OTTAWA -- Canada’s bishops are rallying to comfort the people of Nova Scotia as they try to “heal the rupture within the hearts of a community” after 22 people were murdered in the largest mass killing in modern Canadian history on April 18-19.

Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops president Richard Gagnon, Archbishop of Winnipeg, said the tragedy of the killings and “the horrendous murder of 22 innocent persons” has shocked all Canadians in a letter dated April 29 from the CCCB to the diocese of Halifax-Yarmouth in Nova Scotia.

“This act of violence and loss of lives has brought forth nation-wide sorrow and dismay,” said Gagnon’s letter.

“This outpouring of grief and concern bears witness to a united effort to heal the rupture within the hearts of a community, and an entire province, in need of consolation and understanding during a period of tremendous grief,” continued Gagnon.

The CCCB offers spiritual support to the diocese of Halifax-Yarmouth as the Church tries to console the people of Nova Scotia and the victims of the killing rampage that started in rural Nova Scotia on April 18 and continued until the killer was stopped on the outskirts of Halifax on Sunday, April 19.

“We unite with you in sharing the pain inflicted upon your communities of faith and are in fraternal communion with you in commending the victims to the Lord for their eternal rest,” Gagnon said in the CCCB letter.

“We are one in heart as you address the spiritual and emotional wounds inflicted upon the families and communities which have been affected more closely by this horror,” he said.

Gagnon said all of Canada’s bishops stand in solidarity with the people of Nova Scotia and the church’s leaders in that province as they try to overcome the devastating impact of the killings.

“Know that we stand by your side as you lead, console and give hope in these most trying of times,” Gagnon’s statement on behalf of the CCCB said.

“May the Lord of life and love bestow the necessary wisdom and courage to help you be healers and agents of renewal to those communities entrusted to your pastoral care.”

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