From Presbyterian Record:
The past few days, in the wake of the violence in Orlando, have revealed the challenge that “progressives” and “traditionalists” within the Presbyterian Church have in talking to one another about human sexuality and identity. There are a few reasons this conversation is difficult, but the heightened feelings and responses of the past few days have highlighted the different understandings of these two groups with reference to human sexuality and identity.
Read full story: http://presbyterianrecord.ca/2016/06/14/can-we-talk-2/
After Orlando and every hurt. After every attack and senseless death. After our shock and into our mourning, we reach for God. Read full story: http://presbyterianrecord.ca/2016/06/13/psalm-42-after/
From UCC News:
“All those beautiful, young people — we grieve their deaths,” said the Rev. Susan Blain, UCC minister for worship, liturgy and spiritual formation, at theservice inside the Amistad Chapel, the UCC congregation on the first floor of the national offices in Cleveland. About 60 staff members and visitors sat quietly in a time of lament and prayer.
Read full story: http://bit.ly/23amoWI
Solidarity and support shown for the LGBTQ community is bringing people together at vigils around the country honoring the victims of the deadliest mass shooting in American history.
Read full story: http://bit.ly/1tsuPQI
After the deadliest mass shooting in American history, the General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ issues a statement mourning the loss of those murdered, calling for prayers for their families, and expressing horror and frustration over how commonplace this kind of tragedy has become.
Read full story: http://www.ucc.org/news_ucc_leaders_mourn_50_killed_in_terrorism_against_gay_community_in_orlando_06122016
Three national leaders of the United Church of Christ, in a public witness deploring the mass shooting that ended the lives of 50 people, will be joining clergy of the UCC Florida Conference on Tuesday, June 14, in Orlando, to be present with the communities, congregations, civic leaders, and families and friends of those murdered at the Pulse nightclub, a haven and gathering spot for the LGBTQ community.
Read full story: http://www.ucc.org/news_ucc_leaders_clergy_plan_public_religious_witness_supporting_lgbtq_community_06132016
From Baptist Press News:
“Our Delaney Street Baptist Church family is horrified and heartbroken over the tragic murder of so many precious lives right here in our own neighborhood this past weekend. We mourn with the families who have lost loved ones,” reads a statement on the website of the church, the pastorate of Troy Peeples. “The Bible teaches us to weep with those who are weeping…. We are also praying for the recovery of those who are being treated right now in the hospital.”
Read full story: http://www.bpnews.net/47053/horrified-amp-heartbroken-orlando-mourns
From Adventist News:
“We strongly denounce the hate that led to this mass shooting. This type of senseless violence has no place in this country or in this world. It is appalling that these lives were tragically cut short because of hate. We pray that God’s love will comfort and console the victims’ loved ones whose lives have become a nightmare overnight.
Read full story: http://www.adventistreview.org/church-news/story4102-nad-issues-statement-on-mass-shooting-in-orlando,-florida
From Adventist Today:
“We extend our deepest condolences and prayers for the 50 people killed, the 53 wounded, their families, loved ones and friends. We also pray for the community of Orlando and the heartache and sadness they are experiencing as a result of this tragedy.”
Read full story: http://atoday.org/adventist-denomination-condemns-hate-expresses-condolences-orlando-shooting.html
From The Alliance:
Please pray for the families of the 49 people who perished, as well as the 53 wounded in the shooting early Sunday morning at an Orlando area night club. Intercede also for Phyllis Fitzwater, an Alliance chaplain and Director of Pastoral Care at Orlando Health, where many of the shooting victims were transported.
Read full story: http://www.cmalliance.org/news/2016/06/13/orlando-shooting-please-pray/
From Anglican Journal:
Two Canadian Anglican bishops have joined church leaders around the world in condemning the mass shooting early Sunday at a gay nightclub in Orlando, which left 49 people dead and 53 injured.
Read full story: http://www.anglicanjournal.com/articles/canadian-anglican-bishops-condemn-orlando-shooting
Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, is asking Canadian Anglicans to join him in prayers for the many victims of the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, over the weekend—and for advocates of LGBTQ rights within and outside the church.
Read full story: http://www.anglicanjournal.com/articles/hiltz-requests-prayers-for-orlando-shooting-victims-lgbtq-community
From Cathedral Age:
To our friends of the LGBT community, know that we love you and walk alongside you in your grief and pain, which is all the more searing following an attack in a presumed safe space during LGBT Pride month. Your tears are our tears. You will find shelter in our churches.
Read full story: http://cathedral.org/press-room/bishop-buddes-statement-on-the-orlando-shootings/
From The Episcopal Diocese of Texas news:
The Episcopal Peace Fellowship (EPF) vigorously affirmed President Barack Obama’s call to ban the sale of assault weapons following the worst mass shooting in US history at the Pulse June 12. Forty-nine people were killed and 53 others injured.
Read full story: http://www.epicenter.org/article/episcopal-peace-fellowship-champions-ban-on-assault-weapon-sales-in-wake-of-orlando-shooting/
From Friends Journal:
Around the web and within Friends organizations and communities, Quakers are responding to the tragic news of a mass shooting that occurred early morning on Sunday, June 12, at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Friends Journal sees its role as an amplifier of these Quaker voices. Please let us know of other statements of support in the comments as we pray and mourn with the LGBTQ and Orlando communities.
Read full story: http://www.friendsjournal.org/quakers-respond-orlando-shooting/
We are confronted as a nation and the world with yet another horrendous act of violence, in a seeming never-ending cycle. The shooting this weekend in Orlando is a tragedy. It is a tragedy not only for the lives lost and relationships left grieving, but for the fear and hate that it produces.
Read full story: http://www.brethren.org/news/2016/brethren-leaders-statement-on-orlando-shootings.html
In response to the horrific shooting in Orlando, Fla., the American Red Cross has asked Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) to send a team of caregivers. Since 1980, CDS has been meeting the needs of children by setting up child care centers in shelters and disaster assistance centers across the nation. Specially trained to respond to traumatized children, volunteers provide a calm, safe, and reassuring presence in the midst of the chaos created by natural and human-caused disasters. CDS is a ministry of the Church of the Brethren and is part of Brethren Disaster Ministries.
Read full story: http://www.brethren.org/news/2016/childrens-disaster-services-to-wrok-in-orlando.html
From Presbyterians Today:
Our fearful xenophobia, and our willingness to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to words and deeds of intolerance.Read full story: http://www.presbyterianmission.org/story/prayer-nightclub-shooting-orlando/
“We are responsive in public violence events, not reactive. We work through the presbytery and congregations and support the local faith community as it seeks to be a presence for healing, wholeness and support,” said the Rev. Dr. Laurie Kraus, PDA coordinator. “We don’t rush in because that is not helpful in a public violence setting. We offer support and let the local leaders decide what they need, if they need and then respond. Otherwise, we become part of the chaos that needs to be managed and that is not our intention or mission.”
Read full story: http://www.presbyterianmission.org/story/presbyterian-church-u-s-grieves-yesterdays-mass-shootings-florida/
From The Banner:
At its morning worship on Monday, June 13, Synod 2016 (the general assembly of the Christian Reformed Church) stopped to mourn the shooting of more than a hundred people in Orlando, Fla. Steve Timmermans, executive director of the CRC, connected the Orlando shooting with last year’s murder of the members of a Bible study in Charleston, S.C. He described the events as “acts of hate and terrorism,” reminding the delegates that last year they awoke to the events of Charleston and this year to the events in Orlando.
Read full story: http://thebanner.org/news/2016/06/orlando-shooting-mourned-by-synod
From The Baptist Standard:
Baptists joined others from varied faith communities in calling for prayer, compassion and solidarity after a gunman killed 49 people and injured another 53 at a gay nightclub in Orlando.
Read full story: https://www.baptiststandard.com/news/baptist/19173-baptists-urge-prayers-compassion-and-solidarity-after-orlando-shooting
Millions of Americans have changed our perspectives regarding gays and lesbians for a very simple reason. We know them. Read full story: https://www.baptiststandard.com/opinion/editorial/19175-editorial-can-orlando-s-horror-yield-grace
From Catholic Review:
The interfaith prayer service was led by Orlando Bishop John G. Noonan, who was joined on the altar by Bishop Robert N. Lynch of St. Petersburg, 10 priests of the Orlando Diocese and other religious leaders.
Read full story: http://www.catholicreview.org/article/home/we-must-recognize-dignity-of-all-orlando-bishop-says-at-prayer-vigil
“Pope Francis joins the families of the victims and all of the injured in prayer and in compassion,” said the statement released June 12. “Sharing in their indescribable suffering he entrusts them to the Lord so they may find comfort.
Read full story: http://www.catholicreview.org/article/news/pope-offers-prayers-for-orlando-victims-of-terrible-absurd-violence
From The Christian Century:
One year after the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples can legally marry across the country, and at a time when most polls show a majority of Americans support LGBT equality, the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, shocked many Americans who had begun to take gay rights for granted.
Read full story: http://www.christiancentury.org/article/2016-06/religious-roots-hatred-resurface-orlando
From The Christian Chronicle:
After Sunday’s terrorist attack on a gay nightclub claimed the lives of 49 souls, a dozen members of three Orlando, Fla.-area Churches of Christ brought flowers — and prayers — to a memorial site for the victims.
Read full story: http://www.christianchronicle.org/article/church-members-show-love-after-orlando-massacre
From The Covenant Companion:
Covenant hospital chaplain Jim DeGrado is coordinating the work of all chaplains responding to the mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub and has been ministering to victims’ families and first responders.
Read full story: http://covenantcompanion.com/2016/06/14/covenanter-coordinating-chaplains-in-orlando/
“Unfortunately, this isn’t the first tragedy like this,” Robinson said. “It’s just closer to home.” The church prayed for the victims and their families, and Robinson reminded the congregation about the power of God’s community as a place for comfort and love.
Read full story: http://covenantcompanion.com/2016/06/13/congregation-visibly-shaken-by-massacre-in-their-city/
Gary Walter, president of the Evangelical Covenant Church, responded today to the Orlando nightclub shooting with an open letter to the Covenant community and others.
Read full story: http://covenantcompanion.com/2016/06/13/president-walters-statement-on-orlando-tragedy/
From The Living Church:
“We commend the victims of the shootings in Orlando to your prayers and the prayers of your parish. But prayer alone is not enough,” said the Rt. Andrew M.L. Dietsche, the Rt. Rev. Allen K. Shin, and the Rt. Rev. Mary D. Glasspool, bishops of the Diocese of New York, in a statement published June 13. “Now is the time to reach out in grace and power, and in brotherhood and sisterhood with the larger community of which our churches are a part.”
Read full story: http://www.livingchurch.org/prayer-alone-not-enough
From The Episcopal Diocese of Southeast Florida News:
Message from the Bishop of Southeast Florida on the Orlando Shootings
Read full story: http://www.diosef.org/files/1714/6595/2551/message-from-the-bishop-orlando-shootings.pdf
From The Presbyterian Outlook:
The scenes look hauntingly similar: devastated faces of survivors as they huddle together, clamoring for caring contact, their hands over their mouths, fear etched in their expressions. There are the law enforcement officers in their riot gear; there are armored vehicles, flashing lights, ambulances, fire trucks and news crews. The yellow tape eventually gets pulled across the landscape marking a border forever breached by violence. Then come the numbers, the body count, the injured, how many assailants, weapons unloaded and how fast. There are the details, the who, what, where, when and how – and all the speculation about the why.
Read full story: https://pres-outlook.org/2016/06/loss-irreparable-long-will-lament/
Carolyn Winfrey Gillette has written a new hymn for churches in response to the Orlando shootings. She hopes the hymn will be both comforting and challenging, helping all who grieve and supporting efforts for change.
Read full story: https://pres-outlook.org/2016/06/place-celebration-hymn-orlando/
From The Presbyterian News Service:
As people of the Reformed tradition, we are not naïve about the reality of evil in the world in which we live, or the capacity within us all to choose evil over good. Nor can we doubt the profound capacity to accomplish such evil deeds in a society overrun with weapons designed to kill. Even so, it is shocking when that evil is manifest in such a horrendous way.
Read full story: https://pres-outlook.org/2016/06/pcusa-leaders-mourn-victims-orlando-nightclub-tragedy/
From The Zion:
We are killing ourselves. We believe that all people are created in God’s image. All of humanity
bears a family resemblance. Those murdered in Orlando were not abstract “others,” they are us.
But somehow, in the mind of a deeply disturbed gunman, the LGBTQ community was severed
from our common humanity. This separation led to the death of 49 and the wounding of 54 of us.
Read full story: http://download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/ELCA_Letter_on_Orlando_Shooting.pdf
“There is no place for hatred and violence in any healthy religion or in any healthy society,” Hunter said at a news conference called by the Florida branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. The senior pastor of the 20,000-member, nondenominational Northland Church shared more in a phone interview about the intersection of LGBT discrimination and religion in light of the shooting.
Read full story: https://sojo.net/articles/megachurch-pastor-joel-hunter-nightclub-shooting-ive-got-go-back-and-examine-my-own-heart
There is a lot I love about my hometown. It’s where I learned to build community, read the Bible, practice simple living, and where I felt free to laugh so hard I could barely breathe. My neighbors knew which teacher I had in school, and they listened eagerly as I proudly recited my fifth grade “God, flag, and country” speech. I am who I am because of their love.
Read full story: https://sojo.net/articles/my-beautiful-queer-family
There are hundreds (hundreds!) of violent, mass attacks in our nation each year, many on people who are treated and considered unrecognizably human in this country. The LGBTQ community continues to fight to be recognized, and attacks like the one here in Orlando remind us why that fight is so important and still so necessary.
Read full story: https://sojo.net/articles/will-there-be-place-my-life
From Religion News Service:
Not only did the shootings at the Pulse nightclub occur during Pride month, when LGBT people and supporters across the U.S. celebrate the gains they have made toward equality, they also took place at a gay club — historically a safe gathering place for LGBT people, especially back when no other establishments would welcome them.
Read full story: http://religionnews.com/2016/06/12/religious-roots-of-hatred-resurface-in-orlando/
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association immediately sent trained chaplains with the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team to Orlando to offer emotional and spiritual care to victims of the attack early Sunday (June 12) at Pulse. The Washington National Cathedral tolled its mourning bell 50 times Monday morning for the lives lost.
Read full story: http://religionnews.com/2016/06/13/christians-respond-to-orlando-massacre/
“Let our shared grief and our common faith in Jesus, who called the persecuted blessed, unite us so that hatred and intolerance are not allowed to flourish, so that those who suffer mental illness know the support of a compassionate society, so that we find the courage to face forthrightly the falsehood that weapons of combat belong anywhere in the civilian population,” Cupich wrote.
Read full story: http://religionnews.com/2016/06/12/chicago-archbishop-decries-targeting-of-gays-in-orlando-attack/
Minutes after a gunman opened fire on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., early Sunday (June 12) in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, social media platforms were swamped with prayers for the victims.
Read full story: http://religionnews.com/2016/06/12/prayfororlando-lifts-thoughts-prayers-for-shooting-victims/
The death toll given by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to reporters made the attack the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, eclipsing the 2007 massacre at Virginia Tech university, which left 32 dead.
Read full story: http://religionnews.com/2016/06/12/breaking-50-people-killed-in-massacre-at-florida-gay-nightclub/
From CTUCC news:
The Connecticut Conference is sending two teams of first responders to Orlando, Florida, to offer care, support and public witness following the mass shooting that left 50 people dead and 53 wounded, most of them part of the gay Latino/a community. The C.A.R.E. (Church Awareness Response Effort) Team is made up of members of three New England Conferences, CTUCC, Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
Read full story: http://www.ctucc.org/news/20160614_orlando_teams.html
From The Lutheran:
The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has issued a letter in response to the June 12 shooting that claimed the lives of 49 people at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla. This is the deadliest mass shooting in U. S. history. In the letter Eaton states, “We must speak peace and reconciliation into the cacophony of hatred and division. We must live the truth that all people are created in God’s image.”
Read full story: http://www.elca.org/News-and-Events/7834