Our hearts are with the LGBTQ community in Colorado Springs, and all across the country, following the tragic shooting at a gay club that left five people dead and at least 18 injured. We give thanks for the quick actions of law enforcement and other patrons who subdued the gunman and prevented further deaths. 

As investigators piece together what led to these tragic murders, we know three things to be true: 

First, we know that each victim at Club Q was a beloved child of God, and each member of the LGBTQ community is made in the image of a God who loves and cherishes them. There is no place in this country, our churches or our homes for hatred of God’s LGBTQ children. We know that God’s heart breaks when members of the LGBTQ community are subjected to violence, hatred or discrimination. 

Second, we know that these horrific murders did not occur in a vacuum. When members of the LGBTQ community are targeted in our laws or in our overheated political rhetoric, it’s not long before they become targets of violence. The Trans community, in particular, has been vilified and marginalized, and we must do better. Our faith demands that we love and respect our LGBTQ sisters and brothers as the beautiful creations that they are. 

And finally, we know that we continue to experience an epidemic of gun violence in this nation. Whether in Colorado Springs or the University of Virginia or in too many American streets, it is long past time that we put an end to our obsession with firearms. This endless carnage must stop. 

Together, may we pray: 

O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith
Dean, Washington National Cathedral