On Saturday 14th January, parishioners leaving a Requiem Mass at St Aloysius in Somers Town for a mother and daughter, who had died within a month of each other, were targets of a shooting that injured two children and four adults. The shooting made the national news headlines. Here, we reproduce the article from the Bishops Conference website in which, a few days after the shooting, the Parish Priest, Fr Jeremy Trood, writes as follows:
Last Saturday’s shooting outside our Church was a truly shocking event. How anyone can shoot indiscriminately into any group of people, let alone mourners leaving a Church following a Requiem Mass is unimaginable. Yet it happened and it happened here in our community; that is something that we have to live with today, and in the days and weeks ahead. It is not something that we can quickly forget. However we are not helpless, we are not powerless, there is much we can do and we will do. Above all we can pray and we do pray for all those affected by the shooting, especially those who were injured and remain in hospital. We pray too for the emergency services and give thanks for their swift and professional response. As Christians, confident of the love and mercy of our heavenly Father, we also pray for the perpetrators of the shooting that they may recognise the error of their ways and take responsibility for the consequences of their actions.
Our local community here in Somers Town is both strong and resilient; that has not changed. We have faced challenges in the past and will undoubtedly face new challenges in the future. We remember that this was a single incident, shocking though it is. Many people live in far more dangerous and frightening conditions than we do here; the people of Ukraine suffer so much more and continue to do so every single day. We are indeed fortunate to live in peace in such a diverse and vibrant part of London. As a local community, as a Catholic Parish with deep roots, secure in our faith, we know what we will do: Keep Calm and Carry On.