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Local News

December 19, 2012

Area clergy plan services to help healing


Clergy have shared songs and prayers, she said, and leaders have indicated that the Newtown victims and community will be in thoughts and prayers.

The names of victims were read at services in the Otsego County Lutheran Parish, the Rev. Paul Messner wrote in a memo distributed among local clergy.

Lisa Isabella, a 2012 Hartwick College graduate active in campus ministries, was a graduate of Newtown High School, he said, and she babysat for victims Jesse Lewis and Avielle Richman, and was close to slain teacher Anne Marie Murphy.

“I asked what we, from a distance, could do,” Messner wrote. “She said simply to just pray — and that some of those she’s spoken with don’t want more public displays, but want to grieve quietly and with their own faith communities and families.”

On Tuesday, Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy signed a proclamation declaring Friday as a “Day of Mourning” in Connecticut and requesting that residents statewide participate in a moment of silence at 9:30 a.m.  He requested houses of worship and government buildings to ring bells 26 times at that time in honor of each life that was taken at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Messner said he is arranging for bells to be rung at St. Matthew Lutheran and Evangelical Lutheran churches at 9:30 a.m., with a 27th toll for the gunman’s mother. He also suggested parishioners and friends pause in a moment of silent prayer and to light a candle in honor of the victims.

Clergy said church services this week and Sunday include:

— 7:15 a.m. today at St Matthew Lutheran, 125 Main St., Laurens.

— Noon today at Evangelical Lutheran, 4636 State Route 28, Hartwick Seminary.

— 7 tonight at Atonement Lutheran, 1 Center St., Oneonta.

— 5:15 p.m. Thursday, a Quaker meeting in the Upper Room at the Red Door Presbyterian Church at Main Street and Walling Avenue, Oneonta. After a 45-minute service, people are invited to share “Afterthoughts.”

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