Your letters: Spalding shootings - Church can offer refuge

Library picture: the Rev Rosamund Seal.
Library picture: the Rev Rosamund Seal.
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Last Sunday, those of us who gathered for worship at All Saints’ Church in Moulton came with our hearts and souls burdened by the tragic events of last week and the untimely and shocking deaths of three long-standing members of the community – Lance, Claire and Charlotte Hart.

Such events are rare but when they happen to people to whom we live next door, or down the road from, or went to school with, or worked with, or exchanged pleasantries with as we passed them in the street, we are not only in a state of shock, but also confused and deeply troubled that such extremes of emotion and behaviour can be so close to us and yet we can be so unaware of them.

I hope that everyone affected by this tragedy will continue to feel supported by the communities of which they are part and I hope that the church will continue to provide a place of refuge and comfort for people as long as it is needed.

We cannot comprehend what circumstances might have led up to and what depths of emotion might have led someone to do such a terrible thing.

All we can do is weep at the tragic loss of such promising lives and pray for those who are closest to those who have died, particularly Luke and Ryan, and come together to support all those who, in their own way, have been affected by this tragedy, and may continue to be affected by it for some time.

After an event such as this, the world becomes a different place – and this is where the church can become a place of healing.

All Saints’ Church has stood in the village of Moulton in some form or another for the last 800 years.

For 800 years, it has been there for the community. Who knows what tragedies it has been witness to in those years; who knows what prayers, what losses, what despair and what anger has been voiced to God within its walls.

And it will carry on doing that for the community today, and every day (as should every church, in every community) for as long as it remains standing and has a Christian community to sustain it.

As the rural dean and former vicar of Moulton, I want to take this opportunity to thank the wardens and church members who enabled the church to fulfil this function last week, and particularly the Rev Barbara Hutchinson, who sustained a presence in church for much of Wednesday and a good chunk of Thursday for those who needed someone to speak to as well as the invitation to offer prayer.

I am very aware too that many of those who live in Hatt Close were subjected to an unscrupulous and intrusive invasion by certain press, for which they were obviously completely unprepared.

I can only express my deep concern that they and their families were subjected to this on top of the inevitable shock at what had happened, but I also want to commend those residents whom I spoke to on Wednesday for their dignity and support of one other. Thank you for that.

I am also aware that many will have had to find the words to explain what has happened to their children, many of them far too young to be able to handle the truth, but all too aware that a tragedy of great significance had taken place.

I hope that everyone affected by this tragedy will continue to feel supported by the communities of which they are part and I hope that the church will continue to provide a place of refuge and comfort for people as long as it is needed.

The Rev Rosamund Seal

Holbeach