In our grief
24 May 2017 IN: Bishop
Today is a desperately sad day. Manchester is famous for its music culture, and last night's attack is a direct assault on our desire to meet peacefully and enjoy seeing our favourite stars in person.
It is especially tragic that the terrorist should have sought out an occasion when many of those present were young girls and their parents. This is a new low in the dreadful litany of terrorist atrocities.In times of tragedy my faith brings me back to the cross. To the one who suffered there for the sins of the world and who knows in his own body the agony of suffering. He gives us no easy path out of our pain; instead he assures us that he is there by our side.
Today, we are full of shock, of grief, and of anger. In our grief we call upon God to extend his everlasting arms to those whose lives have been cut short; in our shock we call upon him to reach out with his embracing arms to comfort those who have been scarred in body or in mind; in our anger we call upon him to strengthen us with his mighty arms, to resist evil and build us through love of one another into an ever closer unity across our rich diversity.
I'm touched by the determination of Manchester people to stand together, and ask that the generosity of spirit already shown by so many to those affected will not dwindle in the passing days, but be there for all who need it for as long as they need it.
No element within our community is the problem. Every group in our community is part of the solution. Together we will face down the terrorists, rebuild our public places and our private lives, and continue to the the city that God has called us to be: diverse, energetic, imaginative and kind.