During the Friday noon hour, a prayer service was held in the Chapel of Christ the Healer. The chapel, on the first floor of CHRISTUS Health’s Dallas headquarters, was filled to capacity. People spilled out into the lobby listening to words of comfort, prayers for peace and expressions of grief.
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Dallas Police Chief David Brown asked all of Dallas and Americans across the nation to pray with them at Noon (CST) on July 8 for the victims and their grieving families in the Dallas Police Shooting.
Mayor Rawlings, right, and Chief Brown speak to the public Friday morning following the killing of police officers. Picture Courtesy of David Wood/The Dallas Morning News via AP
Those who attended the prayer service were looking for peace and a healing solvent for community renewal. The string of tragic shootings this week caused these Associates to turn to their faith.
Unlike weekly CHRISTUS chapel services, this one was reflective and carved out of everyone’s day as a time to try and heal, absorb the shock and to find comfort in their faith.
“Let us take comfort and encouragement that we are also joined by our brothers and sisters in CHRISTUS Health who are also participating in celebrations of mass and worship and prayer services across the United States, Mexico, Chile and the world,” said Deborah Simmen from CHRISTUS Health’s Mission Department.
Many tears were wiped away during the service. The service included two very meaningful songs by CHRISTUS Associate Rhonda Evans, Executive Assistant to CHRISTUS Health’s CEO. And there were biblical readings including the following reading from Becket Gremmels, CHRISTUS Health’s Director of Ethics.
A Reading from Paul’s Letter to the Romans
I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, offer yourselves as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God– this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Love must be sincere. Hat what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in enthusiasm, but keep your spiritual passion, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Beless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Do not reapy anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
One of CHRISTUS Health’s core values is compassion. On display on this day, and days to come, will be that compassionate remembrance and continuous prayer for lives lost to gun violence, as well as the four Dallas Police Officers and the single DART Officer killed in the line of duty.