On Thursday, a shooting at the Capital Gazette offices in Annapolis left five dead and a community in shock. This is an absolutely heart-rending attack. There simply are no words adequate to express our feelings. Our hearts go immediately to those impacted by the shooting, the first responders, and the people of Annapolis.
Journalists are so important to our community, and this targeted attack on the hometown newspaper in Maryland’s capital city feels like an attack on all of us. Even as more information about the shooting becomes known, we are rightfully concerned and angered by another act of workplace violence. And our hearts are broken for the families of all those affected by this tragedy.
We have the deepest respect and gratitude for those who responded so quickly to the shooting, and to everyone in the response chain. We appreciate and support the efforts of the law and policy makers in Annapolis to continue to work to make our Maryland workplaces safe—even as this incident demonstrates how difficult this is to achieve. Gun violence is a public health issue in our country, and wringing our hands because the problem it poses is so intractable is no more acceptable than allowing it to go unchecked. And so we stand with those who seek to end violence in our workplaces.
In the face of tragedy and the fear that violence engenders, our mission is still crystal clear: to extend God’s care. To act on our commitment to a ministry of physical, mental, and spiritual healing. Today it means that our hearts are with those who are grieving in Annapolis—and also with those who are committed to a peaceful and safe society. May God grant us strength and comfort at this time, and may the hearts of all those who grieve experience the grace and care of God’s love.