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Resources on Violence

New Resources (including shootings in El Paso and Dayton on August 4, 2019)

Homiletic Resources for School Shooting in Parkland, FL on 2/14/18

  • Lord, Who Threw Out These Forty Days

    by Scott Barton
    What if Jesus threw out these forty days, As in, threw out any glib, certain, outward penitence, And especially these days, all those "heartfelt" Senatorial and Congressional prayers: -Like from $4.5-million-campaign-help-from-the-N.R.A. Sen. Thom Tillis (R, NC) "Please keep the victims, their families, first responders and the community in your thoughts and prayers." -Like from $3.3-million-campaign-help-from-the-N.R.A. Sen. Marco Rubio (R, FL) "Today is that terrible day you pray never comes."
  • The Right to Unbear Arms

    by Michael Coffey
  • Let's Talk About Guns

    by Kerry Connelly
  • The Support of Communal Love

    by Sil Galvan
    I remember preaching on September 11th, 2011 on the tenth anniversary of the attacks and tried to address in my own words how we deal with them. That morning, I talked about Michael Lomonaco who was the executive chef at the Windows on the World restaurant on the 106th and 107th floors of the World Trade Center. That morning, he barely escaped the attacks when he stopped in the lobby of One World Trade Center to get his glasses fixed. The first plane crashed when he was about to head upstairs, and he was evacuated from the lobby shortly thereafter. However, all 79 employees working in the restaurant at the time died in the terrorist attacks, including his chief pastry chef who was a Muslim. Elsewhere in the World Trade Center, many other members of the food service industry, including caterers, corporate dining room staff, kitchen staff, chefs and restaurant delivery people who happened to be in the buildings, lost their lives as well. A group of hospitality-industry professionals met out of concern for the families of those restaurant and dining room workers who had been killed in the attacks. Many of those who died had been entry-level workers whose families would struggle to pay rent and other basic expenses in the wake of the attacks. Windows of Hope Family Relief Fund was founded to provide short- and longer-term assistance to these families.
  • Reading Abraham's Sacrifice of Isaac through the Parkland Shooting

    by Terrance Klein
    Parkland, FL, is something of an American promised land. The New York Times reported that “Parkland is the type of community where affluent young parents move to find verdant parks and pristine sidewalks for their children. Most everybody knows somebody at Stoneman Douglas High, home of the Eagles.” The report continued: State Representative Jared Moskowitz, who graduated from M.S.D. in 1999, sends his 4-year-old to a preschool down the street. “It’s surreal,” Mr. Moskowitz said. “People don’t come to Parkland to open a business. They come to Parkland to raise a family. They come to Parkland to send their child to an A-rated school. They come to Parkland to live in the safest community in the county.”...
  • Why in the Wilderness?

    by Steve Pankey
    On Thursday morning, less than 24 hours after the Parkland shooting, I was in the car early, listening to Golic and Wingo on ESPN Radio as they interviewed Stugotz, a sports radio personality who lives within walking distance of Margory Stoneman Douglas High School. They asked him what the feeling was in the community. His answer reminded me that because of Jesus’ time in the wilderness, God is able to understand what these families are feeling. It also reminded me that as the body of Christ, we are invited to stand there as well, to bring the love of God to those who are lost, wandering in the wilderness. “Some of the acts of kindness I saw yesterday,” he said, “you know… it takes something like this to get us to act like that…
  • A Catholic Parish in Parkland Preaches Love the First Sunday after the Massacre

    by Kate Stein
    What do you say to your congregation after 17 people in their community have been slaughtered in one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history? When one of the victims attended your church’s preschool, and her family has belonged to the parish for more than a decade. At a time when politics are so polarized that it is barely possible to have a conversation about gun control, let alone take legislative action. When prayers and condolences have been extended to families of shooting victims so often that the sentiment feels pointless. This is the challenge the Rev. Ireneusz Ekiert and his staff faced on Sunday at Mary Help of Christians, a parish of about 2,700 families in Parkland, FL...
  • How Shall I Die?

    by Debie Thomas
    Scott. Alyssa. Martin. Nicholas. Aaron. Jaime. Christopher. Luke. Cara. Gina. Joaquin. Alaina. Meadow. Helena. Alex. Carmen. Peter. These are the names of the seventeen people — fourteen students and three faculty members — who died in a mass shooting this week at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Alyssa, fourteen years old, was a star soccer player. Cara loved the beach. People often spelled Joaquin’s name wrong, so he had a snappy nickname: “Guac.” Meadow worked after school at a motorcycle repair business. Scott and Aaron, both faculty members, died to protect their students...

Worship Resources for School Shooting in Parkland, FL on 2/14/18

World Trade Center Bombing

  • Search and Rescue

    by Peter Haynes
    Friends, we’ve seen these parables acted out this week. I recall watching a television reporter a few blocks away from the World Trade Center in New York City as he described the rescue workers racing to the scene. In the background I could see the firefighters heading that way. So many of them were operating by a different math. Yes, they had loved ones somewhere, but still they journeyed toward peril in the effort to save even so much as one person. The value of their own lives was also laid on the line... And then a while later this same reporter, in the same location, spoke in disbelief about that high rise tower collapsing. The scene in the background involved fewer firefighters, who were covered in dust, stumbling back. I really don’t want to be reliving that day, my friends. Nor do I wish to get all melodramatic. It’s just that this scripture reminds me of that scene. At the same time, however, it lifts my thoughts beyond the horror we all (to some degree) witnessed... Jesus, when he told these parables, was painting a picture of God. As we try to come to grips with this week, with the non-stop barrage of terrifying images that came into our homes via television and were etched on our brains, we need this picture of God. Title it, "Search and Rescue"...
  • Fearful

    by Randy Hyde
    (a response to the events of 9/11)
  • Holy Communion

    by Paul Nuechterlein
    We’ve experienced a terrifying evil as a nation this week. And the question arises: Why didn’t God stop it? Billy Graham noted in his sermon Friday that he’s heard this question a lot this week. Why does God allow such evil? One of the best answers to this question that I’ve run across didn’t come from some thick theology book, but from one of the Trailblazer series books that I read to my boys. It’s the story of one of those ugly times in the church’s history when it inflicted great suffering and death on people in the name of God. The church was persecuting one of the new Protestant groups in Europe, the followers of Menno Simons, the Mennonites. This book tells the story of an adolescent boy, Adriaen, whose mother is being held in prison to be hanged simply for being a Mennonite. But here’s a conversation Adriaen has with his friend Betty after his visit to the dungeon. Listen for Betty’s answer to the question of why God doesn’t stop evil: “I thought God was supposed to take care of us,” Adriaen grumbled. “What have I ever done to deserve losing my mother? It’s not fair.””Adriaen, don’t confuse God with life. Life may be unfair…God is not. It wasn’t God who put your mother in prison.” “Maybe not, but [God] didn’t stop those men from doing it.” “And you think [God] should have? You think [God] should have stopped the authorities from arresting those believers?” “Yeah, why not?” “Well, God can do whatever [God] pleases, but when was the last time [God] stopped you from doing something wrong?” “I don’t know,” Adriaen said with a shrug, not sure he liked the direction the conversation was going. “The reason you don’t remember is because [God] very rarely does something like that,” said Betty matter-of-factly. “We’d like God to stop other people from doing bad things all the time, but when it comes to us, we want the freedom to make our own choices even if they are wrong.”...
  • Ordinary 24C (2001)

    by Thomas Reese, SJ
  • National Tragedy

    from Worship That Works

Homiletic Resources for Anniversary of September 11, 2001

Worship Resources for Anniversary of September 11, 2001

Other Resources for Anniversary of September 11, 2001

Music Resources for Anniversary of September 11, 2001

Resources for the Boston Marathon Bombing on April 15, 2013

Resources for Massacre of Nine Persons at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC on June 17, 2015

Homiletic Resources for School Shooting in Newtown, CT on December 14, 2012

Worship Resources for School Shooting in Newtown, CT on December 14, 2012

Resources for Shootings at Colombine, in Arizona, at Virginia Tech and in Aurora, Colorado

Currently Unavailable