Orlando, Fla., Jun 15, 2016 / 13:57 pm
Following the mass shooting that claimed the lives of 49 in Orlando, Catholics have tried to be the hands and feet of Christ in showing mercy to victims and their families and loved ones.
"We're in the Jubilee Year of Mercy. And here we have individuals who are in tremendous need of mercy – the repose of the souls of those who are deceased, the family members, the friends, the tremendous shock that has occurred personally," Gary Tester, executive of Catholic Charities Central Florida, told CNA on Wednesday.
The Diocese of Orlando's response to the tragedy, he added, follows the words of Pope Francis, who "has called us to remember how important it is to simply love our neighbor."
Early Sunday morning, 29-year-old Omar Mateen opened fire at a gay Orlando nightclub and began taking hostages. He killed 49 people and injured 53 more before he himself was killed by SWAT officers responding to the scene.