Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel of the Catholic Diocese of Lafayette issued the following statement to the people of Acadiana in regards to the El Paso and Dayton tragedies:
All of us are shocked by the senseless violence, loss of life and evil that took place in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio this weekend. Twenty-nine innocent people, men, women, children and senior citizens were brutally murdered. Ordinary people like us, shopping for back to school supplies or enjoying an evening with friends were gunned down in an unspeakably evil act.
Our minds cannot understand why. We try to put logic to an illogical act, reason to an irrational taking of innocent life. How can such evil come from the human heart? I call all people of good will to join me in prayer for the happy repose of the souls of those innocent victims and their families who carry such a heavy cross. May a loving God who created them gather them into His warm embrace. I ask all to pray that our country return to a reverence and respect for the sacredness of all human life created in the image and likeness of God and precious from the moment of conception in the womb to natural death.
Let us also pray in thanksgiving for all the law enforcement personnel and first responders who acted so swiftly and put their lives on the line to save others. “No greater love exists than to lay down one’s life for another.”
The Diocese of Lafayette is inviting the people of Acadiana to join in prayer tomorrow as a community as we remember those who lost their lives in this weekend’s violence throughout our nation.
A Mass of Remembrance for victims of this weekend’s mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio will be held at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, August 6, 2019 at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Lafayette. Bishop Deshotel will serve as celebrant.
For those unable to attend in person, the Mass will be live streamed via our Diocesan website, www.diolaf.org. Members of all faith communities are encouraged to attend.