Condolence messages and prayers are flowing from across the world for the families of the fallen.
As the decade ends, one hopes and prays for a better world to live in. The year 2019 has seen many disheartening events and the holiday season seemed like a perfect time to wish for a peaceful tomorrow. People in the country weren't done celebrating the holy day of Christmas when another saddening incident from Texas city shocked the entire world.
On December 29, 2019, a shooter wearing a black trenchcoat, his face hidden by the coat hood, opened fire on churchgoers in the middle of Sunday mass at the Church of Christ in White Settlement, Texas, reports CBS DFW.
6. Parishioner falls after shooter fires at him. First man holds bible in front of himself as shooter takes a direct aim second shot at him. 3rd: a flash of white light appears (yellow arrow) w bible as 1st man falls holding it after second shot. #ChurchOfChrist guard draws bead. pic.twitter.com/hRZfmOZqH6— DocRock1007 🇺🇸 (@DocRock1007) December 29, 2019
Two people are declared dead and one is in critical condition after the church mass shooting. This saddening incident also witnessed an unexpected occurrence. As described by a witness to CBS, a church security member, who is identified as a former FBI agent was armed at the time, and jumped into action as soon as the shooting started and gunned the shooter down. The entire incident was caught on camera as it happened during the live session of the church.
A motive, however, has not been established for the shooting, which lasted six seconds, reports BBC.
Don’t come bring your hate to #ChurchofChrist https://t.co/s3dvMplndd— sharksgirl101 (@michelleCCoelh1) December 30, 2019
Tragically, the security personnel also lost his life during the confrontation. Church elder Mike Tinius told NY Times that he had known that victim for more than 20 years. "He was trying to do what he needed to do to protect the rest of us," he said.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott called the shooting "an evil act of violence". "Places of worship are meant to be sacred, and I am grateful for the church members who acted quickly to take down the shooter and help prevent further loss of life,” he said in a statement.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said he is shocked and saddened to hear the reports.
We are shocked and saddened to hear reports of a shooting at a church in White Settlement.— Texas Attorney General (@TXAG) December 29, 2019
As reports come in, please pray for any victims and their families, this congregation, and the law enforcement officials at the scene. My office will assist in any way needed.
A witness, Isabel Arreola said to CBS, “It was the most scariest thing. You feel like your life is flashing before you. I was so worried about my little one.”
People from across the world are taking to Twitter to express their pain and anger over the incidents in the Church of Christ. As of December 25, the 359th day of the year, there have been 406 mass shootings in the U.S., according to data from the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive (GVA), reports CBS News.
Praying for my brothers & sisters in Christ! #churchofChrist #WeAreTheChurch 🙏 https://t.co/0oE6SQhqJe— .::GOD's PROPERTY::. (@MhmmThatsHER) December 29, 2019
How does this cause violence in one’s home? Or attending church in Texas? Just say no to antisemitism. We must speak up when we hear prejudice against any religion, race or gender. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. #HanukkahAttack #ChurchOfChrist #EnoughIsEnough pic.twitter.com/3tyfILSdh1— Stuart Lewis (@lettersandwalls) December 29, 2019
The culture has gone demonically wild another shooting Freeway Church of Christ in Settlement, Texas. Praying for the families during this difficult time. We are living in perilous times the House of God isn’t safe.#ChurchofChrist— robert caruth jr (@didasko1) December 30, 2019