I am writing you just two days after the horrific church shooting in West Fort Worth. We grieve for the victims and their families and pray for God’s healing touch on every person present who experienced the horror of this shooting. We also thank God that West Freeway Church of Christ had a security plan in place. The quick action of the security team may have saved many lives on Sunday. Please pray for Britt Farmer, senior minister of West Freeway Church of Christ, and all of our brothers nd sisters in Christ who experienced such evil.
We know that churches, schools, and other public places should be safe places for people to gather to worship, learn, or simply enjoy the company of others. The events of Sunday remind us that our world is broken and is full of broken people. We are also reminded that we can take nothing for granted and need to be prepared to react to any kind of emergency situation. Our new Canon to the Ordinary, Canon Jay Atwood, will be checking in with the parishes and missions of the Diocese of Fort Worth to assist any congregation with their need for emergency preparedness. I encourage every congregation to have a plan in place to deal with any kind of emergency that may arise.
The shooting on Sunday reminds us also that people in our world are desperate to receive the transforming love of Jesus. While we have the important responsibility of protecting ourselves, our loved ones, and our neighbors from evil, we also have the responsibility of reaching out to the lonely, the least, and the lost. The power of the Gospel to change lives should be our first resource as we come to grips with the evil that is in our midst.
The Rt. Rev. Ryan S. Reed