It is too soon to know the full toll of the terrible violence at the shooting this afternoon at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, or how many lives this trauma will eventually touch. But we know that many of our people will turn to their faith community as they seek to understand this senseless violence.
Children and youth in our congregations in particular may struggle with feelings of helplessness and lack of control, and familiar places may seem suddenly unsafe. Everyone responds differently to tragedy and trauma, but it is easy to see how an event like this can create a great deal of anxiety in children of all ages, because they may interpret the tragedy as a personal danger to themselves and those they care about.
We offer the following resources to support your work with families in the coming days. Adults may need support in talking openly and reassuringly with their children, and will need to make space for their own grief and fear as well. We hope these resources will be of some help.
We have been in touch with the ministers of our two closest Unitarian Universalist congregations, Mattatuck Unitarian Universalist Society in Woodbury, CT (Rev. Jeanne Lloyd) and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Danbury (Rev. Barbara Fast) and will continue to monitor the situation and let you know how the wider UU community can help. The UU Trauma Response Ministry team is ready to respond as needed.
Please let us know if we can be of any service in the aftermath of today's violence. We join you in sending healing prayers to all those affected by this terrible tragedy, today and in the days to come.
Andrea Lerner Rev. Sue Phillips
District Executive District Executive
Metro New York District Clara Barton & Massachusetts Bay Districts