As Lutheran Christians, we recognize violence and sin are a part of our world. In the wake of this act of terror in Las Vegas, how we respond as Christians and disciples of Jesus demonstrates the gift of faith in us.
We first and always pray for the victims, first responders, and their family and friends. We offer Christian sympathy and consolation as scripture encourages (Romans 12:15).
We, as able, give blood and other aid to victims and organizations who can assist.
Then we are called to educate ourselves and our communities on the root causes of, in this case, gun violence. To recognize that public policy decisions impact access to firearms and have honest conversation about our rights, as well as what contributes to public safety. To set aside preconceived opinions and listen and learn. Advocating for peace and justice.
This link contains many resources, including a pastoral letter from the ELCA Conference of Bishops from 2013 in response to the murder of schoolchildren and faculty and staff at Sandy Hook. I was not in the conference at that time, but its words ring true today.
Our hearts have once again been broken as they were in Dallas on July 7, 2016, and all too often in recent years. May this act of terror once more move us to work for peace.