Many churches in Devon have offered prayers for Plymouth after a tragic shooting incident in the city. A gunman killed five people including a child and then turned the firearm on himself.
Churches Together in Devon have asked Christians to pray for the people of Plymouth and especially the Keyham area after the tragic events. St Thomas Church (Royal Navy Avenue) and St Mark’s Church (Cambridge Road, Ford), are both very close to Biddick Drive, where the incident happened. Both churches are open for prayer, lighting candles, peace and someone to talk to.
“The events in Plymouth on Thursday, which unfolded sometime after 6pm, are still not fully understood, but it seems that a young man shot dead five people and then killed himself. For this to happen in Devon’s ‘ocean city’ of Plymouth, as it is anywhere, is simply shocking,” said Rev Ruth Whitehead, who is the Moderator of the United Reformed Church’s South Western Synod.
“We acknowledge that we need to dig deep into our faith at times like this, to know that our security lies in God and the love of God for every life cut short, for every frightened community and for ever tortured mind,” Rev Whitehead continued. The same God who has walked with us through the pandemic will stand with us now, in our shock and our grief.
“The news of the Cornwall and Devon Police having to handle a mass shooting stands in jarring contrast to their usual work of managing visitor numbers in this part of the South West known best for its beaches and cream teas. “We thank God for those who help us to ‘stay safe’. “
Many people have been sharing messages of comfort on social media, with an outpouring of green hearts. 💚 💚 💚
“Praying for peace and for all those effected by this awful incident in our city,” the local Christian radio station, Cross Rhythms Plymouth posted. “Our hearts go out to all who have lost loved ones.”
Rediscover Church in Exeter went LIVE on Facebook and YouTube to “pray for God’s peace and comfort to be with all those impacted.” You can hear prayers from Pastor Mark Pugh and Rev Luke Mansfield of Hope Baptist Church, Plymouth in the video below.
Prayers for Plymouth after shooting
Prayers will be said in many of churches over the days to come – for those who have died and their families, for those frightened or traumatised by what has happened, and for the emergency services. The United Reformed Church invites Christians throughout the UK to please pray with and for the people of Plymouth, trying to help and support one another in the coming days.
Our God, our help in ages past
Our hope for years to come
Our shelter from the stormy blast
And our eternal home.
Loving God – our God – God of all,
We ask for your strength when we feel overcome,
We ask for your shelter when we feel lost,
We ask for your saving grace when we feel frightened.
Bring peace, hope and love to the people of Plymouth and all who need you,
In your name, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
We hardly ever say it, Lord. The words mass shooting.
Six people have died. Many more are mourning. All of us are numb with shock.
We pray for those who have lost family members, loved ones and friends.
We pray for those who responded and continue to respond – the police, the paramedics, the air ambulance pilots, the hospital staff and those now investigating this senseless tragedy.
We pray for those remembering when lives have been lost because of conflict and violence. Individuals who were taken too soon, and those no longer with us because of tragically similar events.
Show them all your love, your comfort and strength, now and in the hours, days, weeks, months and years to come.