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Bishop: Jo Cox gave her life for her community

by Aaron James

Rt Revd Dr Jonathan Gibbs told a vigil in her honour at St Peter's Church in Birstall last night: "She grew up in this community, she lived for this community, she served this community and, in the end, she gave her life for this community."

Hundreds of people packed into the parish church to remember the local MP in a solemn service punctuated by readings, music and prayers.

Among those who came together to remember the young MP were many of her Labour colleagues, including Yvette Cooper, Dan Jarvis, Rachel Reeves, Caroline Flint and Mary Creagh.

The Bishop added: "None of us, I suspect, could believe the news when we heard it this afternoon.

"We still can't believe it as we come tonight overwhelmed by shock and grief and a tremendous sense of loss but, above all, in many ways, we're still numb."

"There will also be great feelings of anger and hurt and pain.

"How we handle those feelings in our own lives and in our communities will be of great importance. We are now here for each other tonight."

Yui Mok/PA Wire

He said he knew two things about Ms Cox. The first was that she was "a woman who was utterly committed to serving others".

The other, he said, was that she was "someone who was deeply committed to her own family as a wife and a mother".

"Tonight we honour both of those," he said.

Speaking on Premier's Inspirational Breakfast, Revd Paul Knight from St Peter's said that Jo Cox was a uniter.

He said: "The fact that we were there together was in itself a unifying factor.

"That was one of the things Jo wanted; she wanted communities to be brought together, she was working for that.

"Even in her death, that's happened."

Charles Badenoch, Vice President, Advocacy and Justice for Children at World Vision International, said: "Jo was a shining advocate for children's rights the world over, and an inspiration to so many people. Her senseless death is a huge blow and we continue to hold her family in our prayers.

"We had the privilege of working closely with Jo and witnessed her remarkable drive and determination to fight important causes, ranging from nutrition to children affected by the Syria crisis.

"We commit to continue championing the causes that mattered so much to Jo, to ensure her voice is amplified." 

Listen to Premier's Esther Higham speaking to Revd Paul Knight on Inspirational Breakfast:

Listen to Premier's Hannah Tooley speak to Rt Revd Dr Jonathan Gibbs here:

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