Today’s tragedy in our city is appalling and deeply painful. We, as a church, have supported and become friends with families from the Middle East. Some of these friends were praying at the mosque this afternoon. Four of them were shot. Tonight, the communities that care for them are wrapping around the families, supporting them in hospital and their homes. Groups have gathered to pray in each of the communities sponsoring a family. We, with the churches of Canterbury, “are praying for our Muslim brothers and sisters, for those injured and those who have lost loved ones, for the police, ambulance and other emergency services, and for all in the city of Christchurch who are feeling distress and fear tonight” (taken from a combined churches of Christchurch statement from Te Raranga). As we approach Easter we are reminded that Jesus suffered, seeking peace and compassion for all – may we respond and pray in the same way.