The Reverend Peter Morales, president of the Unitarian Universalist Association, issued the following statement earlier today in response to the day’s tragic events in Newtown, Connecticut:
I am shocked and profoundly saddened by the news of the massacre at a school in Newtown, Connecticut. My deepest condolences go out to the families and friends of those who lost their lives today. I know of nothing more tragic than a young life cut short by violence. This is a time for embracing one another and helping each other find strength and solace.
This is just the latest horrific act of gun violence targeting innocent lives. Whether it’s the mall shooting in Oregon or the mass murders in Aurora, Colorado or the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and others in Tucson, Arizona or the Columbine school killings, these instances of violence continue to erupt in America. It is an additional tragedy that today’s killings occurred in an elementary school where our youngest and most vulnerable spend their day. All Americans must reflect humbly and work to change the conditions that allow such violence to take place.
We must rededicate ourselves to creating a society where differences are resolved without violence, where the mentally unstable do not have ready access to lethal force, where violence is not glorified, and where we can live, love, and work in safe places. Our task as a religious people committed to compassion and to peace is to show a better way.