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Holy Synod requests prayers for victims of Colorado shooting

SYOSSET, NY [OCA] -- On the morning of Friday, July 20, 2012, Americans awoke to the tragic news that shortly after midnight, seventy-one innocent people attending a screening of "The Dark Knight Rises" in an Aurora, Colorado theater had been shot by a lone gunman. Ten of the victims died at the scene; two others died in area hospitals.

It goes without saying that at times like these, as we are once again left with a sense of confusion and righteous indignation, our faith is sorely tested. Left with a sense of confusion and righteous indignation, it is reasonable to ask what would possess someone to enter a theater, dressed in black with body armor, and open fire at the audience? Attempting to rationalize an act that, by its very nature can only be termed irrational, is futile. Accepting the fact that such irrational acts do indeed occur, however, reminds us that we indeed live in a fallen world, a world that so desperately needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ, centered as it is on forgiveness and love.

Turning to our all-merciful Saviour as our only hope, we, the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America, call upon the faithful of the Church to pray for all affected by this tragedy -- those who perished and their grieving families, those who survived but must now process all they had witnessed and endured, and those who now must investigate motive and meaning while reassuring the public that every means will be pursued to ensure that similar crimes will be prevented in the future. And let us pray for the perpetrator, that he may embrace the Spirit of repentance to which one and all are called by the One Who came into this fallen world to proclaim, "In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world" [John 16:33].

May the comfort that comes to those who place their faith and hope in the love and promises of our Saviour fill all affected by this tragedy and "wipe away all tears" from their -- and our -- eyes [Revelation 21:4] while focusing our vision on the life of the world to come. May the memory of those who perished be eternal, and may the Physician of our souls and bodies raise those who survived from their beds of infirmity.
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This Week in the Life of your Bishop

Diocesan Assembly: October 8-10, Lansing, IL

Upcoming Feasts of the Church

Polyeleos-rank Jun 19 - The Holy Apostle Jude the Brother of the Lord
Polyeleos-rank Jun 23 - Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God
Great Feast Jun 24 - Nativity of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist, John
Polyeleos-rank Jun 26 - Tikhvin Icon of the Mother of God
Polyeleos-rank Jun 28 - Icon of the Mother of God, called The Three Hands; Polyeleos-rank Our Venerable Fathers Sergius and Herman, Wonder-workers of Valaam
Great Feast Jun 29 - The Holy Glorious and All-Praised Leaders of the Apostles, Peter and Paul
Polyeleos-rank Jul 2 - The Holy Hierarch John Maximovich, Archbishop of Shanghai and San Francisco;
Polyeleos-rank Jul 3 - The Holy Hieromartyr Philip, Metropolitan of Moscow
Polyeleos-rank Jul 5 - Our Venerable Father Sergius, Abbot and Wonderworker of Radonezh
Polyeleos-rank Jul 6 - Our Venerable Father Athanasius of Mount Athos
Vigil-rank Jul 8 - The Sitka (Kazan) Icon of the Mother of God
Polyeleos-rank Jul 10 - The Deposition of the Robe of our Savior; Polyeleos-rank Our Venerable Father Anthony of the Kiev Caves
Polyeleos-rank Jul 11 - The Holy Equal of the Apostles Blessed Princess Olga
Polyeleos-rank Jul 12 - Icon of the Mother of God, called The Three Hands
Polyeleos-rank Jul 14 - Our Venerable Father Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain
Vigil-rank Jul 15 - The Holy Equal of the Apostles Great Prince Vladimir
Polyeleos-rank Jul 17 - New Royal Passion-bearers Tsar Nicholas and his family
Vigil-rank Jul 19 - Our Venerable Father Seraphim, Wonder-worker of Sarov
Vigil-rank Jul 20 - Holy and Glorious Prophet Elijah
Polyeleos-rank Jul 23 - Pochaev Icon of the Mother of God
Polyeleos-rank Jul 24 - Right-believing Russian Princes Boris and Gleb
Polyeleos-rank Jul 26 - The Righteous Priest Jacob Netsvetov, Enlightener of the Native Peoples of Alaska
Polyeleos-rank Jul 28 - Smolensk Icon of the Mother of God
Polyeleos-rank Jul 30 - The Holy Martyr John the Warrior

 

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