Grace in tragedy: Prayer for Christchurch

What happens after death? How could someone be so evil?

Christchurch college students are asking these questions after a mass shooting rocked the peaceful community of Christchurch, New Zealand. On March 15, a single gunman murdered 50 Muslim men, women and children inside a local mosque, wounding 42 others.

But since that horrible day, “Kia Kaha,” translated Stay Strong, is the city’s new motto.

Flowers and cards for the victims of the Christchurch shooting at the Botanic Gardens.

Flowers and cards for the victims of the Christchurch shooting at the Botanic Gardens.

“Generally, New Zealand is a very laid back, apathetic country that has found pride in being a peaceful paradise. However, last week’s mosque shootings completely shook up the country,” Christchurch CO staff shared. “Kiwis had a stark wake-up call to the fact that violence is possible inside their country and that the bubble they’ve been living in wasn’t as secure as they thought. I also think that the shooting is like a first blister for New Zealand.

It hurts deeply and Kiwis are recovering slowly, but they are making changes in hopes that a shooting like this won't happen again."

Christchurch college students were deeply affected by the tragedy and Hannah Diamond, CO staff at The University of Canterbury, shared:

“The students are troubled by how much life was lost and have started to ask bigger questions.

This gives our ministry an opportunity to share the gospel with students who can't find the answers to their questions in culture and society."

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"God always turns something meant for evil into an avenue for His glory and our good. Several students have also reached out to our team asking to talk about what happened and to be comforted, Hannah said.

“This is a helpful outlook for Christians, especially a team in ministry. Our flesh can naturally get angry, but God calls us to be humble and love our neighbor in difficult times,” Hannah said. 

Please join us in praying for CO Christchurch and the entire community as God works in the aftermath of this tragedy. 

Pray specifically:

  • Kiwis would break out of their apathy

  • Christchurch would heal/recover well

  • Fresh ears to hear the gospel in light of the shootings 

Bennett Rolan