Indianapolis archbishop offers prayers in response to local mass shooting

Archbishop Thompson Archdiocese of Indianapolis

The Archbishop of Indianapolis on Friday offered prayers and called on Catholics to work to end gun violence, after a deadly mass shooting at a local FedEx facility the night before.

“Once again our nation is mourning the loss of lives in a mass shooting and this time it is eight of our own neighbors who were killed at the Indianapolis FedEx Ground center,” Archbishop Charles Thompson of Indianapolis stated on Friday morning.

“We pray for the victims and loved ones of those who were murdered as well as those who were injured. We pray that these senseless acts of violence will stop,” he stated.

On Thursday evening, a gunman shot and killed eight people and wounded several others at the Fedex Ground-Plainfield Operation Center in Indianapolis.

Eight people were pronounced dead at the scene, five people were hospitalized with injuries from the shooting, and two others were treated for injuries at the scene and released, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department reported.

Police said they responded to calls about the active shooter after 11 p.m. local time. The shooter killed himself according to “preliminary information at the scene,” the department said.

The shooting occurred less than a month after a gunman killed 10 people at a grocery store in Boulder, Colorado, and just one month after a gunman killed eight people in a series of shootings at Atlanta-area massage parlors.

“The U.S. Catholic Bishops have long supported changes in the law to control the sale and use of firearms,” Archbishop Thompson stated.

He urged Catholics to work for an end to gun violence.

“May we all recognize that we are made in the image and likeness of God and continue to do what we can to end this senseless violence and to live together in peace,” he said 

Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington, Virginia, also issued a statement of unity with Archbishop Thompson, asking Catholics in his diocese to pray for the shooting victims and their families, “and all who are suffering physical and emotional wounds as a result of this senseless act of violence.”

“May the faithful departed be granted eternal life and may our Risen Lord bless us and our nation with his peace,” Bishop Burbidge stated.

The U.S. bishops' conference offered prayers and called for an end to gun violence, in a tweet on Friday.

"We join our prayers with @ArchbpCThompson in mourning the loss of lives at the Indianapolis FedEx Ground Center. We pray for the victims and their families and we call for a stop to this senseless violence ravaging our country. Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord," the conference stated.

This story was updated on April 16.

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