The U.S. bishops’ conference Sunday issued a statement in response to the Aug. 31 Texas shooting spree that left 5 people dead and 21 injured. It was the ninth statement the bishops’ conference has made in response to mass shootings in 2019.
“As we travel to Sunday Mass, we do so with heavy hearts. Just a few short hours ago, less than a month after the horrific instances of gun violence in California, Texas and Ohio, yet further terrible shootings took place, this time involving random targeting of victims on roads and highways,” Cardinal Daniel Dinardo, U.S. bishops’ conference president, wrote in a Sept. 1 statement.
“Once again, these horrific onslaughts demonstrate unequivocally the undeniable existence of evil in our society. I am deeply saddened to witness yet again scenes of violence and contempt for human life being repeated in our Nation’s streets,” DiNardo wrote.
“With renewed resolve, I call on all people of good will, starting with our Catholic leaders and faithful, to work tirelessly to root out the causes of such crimes. As people of faith, we must continue to pray for all the victims, and for healing in all these shattered communities that now extend across the length and breadth of our land,” the cardinal added.
The bishops’ conference has issued similar 2019 statements following other U.S. mass shootings in Texas, Ohio, Colorado, California, and Virginia. Those shootings took place at a Walmart, a downtown area, a garlic festival, a school, a synagogue, and a municipal building. The U.S. bishops also issued a statement after a March shooting at two mosques in New Zealand.
The Aug. 31 shooting, which took place in Midland and Odessa, Texas, was at least the 18th deadly mass shooting to take place in the U.S. in 2019.
This shooting began when an unidentified man was stopped by police for a traffic violation, and shot at officers as they approached him. After the shooter fled from that scene, he shot at pedestrians and people in cars. Among those shot was reportedly a 17-month-old girl. The shooter, who hijacked a mail truck during his shooting spree, was eventually shot and killed by police outside a movie theater.