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'Continue to pray for those most affected': says Bishop of Plymouth as the city holds a minute's silence

by Kelly Valencia

Plymouth has come together to hold a minute's silence for the victims of last week's shooting.

It's part of several events taking place this week to mourn and reflect on the tragedy as a community. 

Six people died on 12th August after 22-year-old Jake Davison opened fired in the Keyham area, including a three-year-old girl. 

"It's been lovely to have the assurance of many people's prayers, and to continue to pray for those most affected would be, you know, a great gift to us," the Bishop of Plymouth, Right Reverend Nick Mckinnel told Premier. 

Many local church leaders and places of worship have opened their doors to offer a safe place for the community.  

"Two particular churches that are part of the Church of England, St Marks and St Thomas Keyham, are open with people to talk to and providing somewhere for the community to come and meet with others talk over what's on their mind, have a coffee or simply slip into the church and quietly ponder and pray, "Bishop Nick explained. 

He continued: "The Salvation Army [is] helping as well, other volunteers and other denominations… so there's been quite a response not just from the church, but from other agencies as well. I popped into my local primary school which has opened itself up in the school holidays. Some quite small children saw some fairly terrible things. And this was a place for them to come. They were sitting in a little circle with a teacher they knew just talking about life and being together and hopefully healing some of those memories that that must have been shocking for them."

The Bishop of Plymouth will lead a civic service on Wednesday at the Minster church of St Andrews in Plymouth, as part of the events organised by the city council. 

He said he hopes it to be a time of trying to "make sense of what's happened". 

"[To] at least be together and put into words some of the things that we feel, the shock that we have, the gratitude for the emergency services, or the reminder of the things that we really value family, friends, neighbours, communities, living in an appropriate way," he said.

"I'm putting some words together based on Psalm 130. 'Out of the depths, I cry out to you'. And some people are feeling very much in the depths here. But the Psalmist goes on to encourage just to wait to reflect, to watch and to hope in the Lord," Bishop Nick continued. 

The civic service will start at 10.30.

For those unable to attend any of the activities planned, the city council has opened an online book of condolence that can be found here.




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