February 20, 2017 · 0 Comments
I was sitting in the church that I regularly attend, Trinity United in Shelburne, at 8 p.m. Feb. 5, thinking what an atrocious, brutal and wicked act of violence it would be, if someone came through the door shooting a gun randomly at the people worshipping.
We were gathered at a vigil to remember the people, who were praying, exactly one week earlier, at a mosque in Quebec City, when, allegedly, Alexandre Bissonnette walked in and began shooting. Azzedine Soufiane, Abdelkrim Hassane, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti and Ibrahima Barry were murdered and others were wounded.
The fear and shock I would have felt, the anger and outrage I would have subsequently felt if I had survived, would have been all consuming. And so we gathered to show how sorry we were, and continue to be, for the families and friends who have been harmed by the alleged actions of Bissonnette.
Imams and ministers from several denominations, people young and old from Brampton, Caledon, Fergus and throughout Dufferin County, people from many cultures and traditions gathered to show our unity as Canadians who believe in peace and tolerance; people who believe in the freedom of religion as guaranteed in our Charter of Rights and Freedoms; people who accept and respect one another as partners on this earth, in this time. I want to express my heart-felt sadness for the murder of these six men and to the others who have been harmed by what took place the night of Jan. 29, and offer my sincere sympathy to their families and friends.
Peace be with you and peace be among us.
Dufferin-Caledon Federal Liberal Association