Bishops Express Solidarity With Sikh Community After Tragedy

Call for an End to Violence After Shooting During Sunday Service

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WASHINGTON, D.C., AUG. 7, 2012 ( The chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs expressed the bishops’ prayerful solidarity with the Sikh community in the United States following Sunday’s shooting at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.

«In this time of grief, we Catholics mourn with our Sikh brothers and sisters,» said Bishop Denis Madden, auxiliary bishop of Baltimore. «We share a warm and fruitful friendship, as well as a love of God and a belief in the community of all people, making yesterday’s tragedy all the more painful and difficult to comprehend.»

Tragedy struck the Sikh community in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, when Wade Michael Page, a U.S. Army veteran, entered a temple during Sunday services and opened fire, killing six people and critically wounding three others. Outpourings of grief and sympathy have flooded the small community. President Barack Obama also ordered that all flags around the country be flown at half-staff to honor the victims of the tragedy. 

Bishop Madden said that the U.S. bishops stand with the Sikh community and rejected all forms of violence, particularly those «inflicted out of religious intolerance.» 

«We are especially saddened that this horrendous act was carried out in a house of worship against people joined together as a family to worship God,» he said. «Our prayers are with everyone touched by this, especially those who’ve lost family members and loved ones.»

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