I am the senior pastor of St. James United Methodist Church in Tampa, Florida. These are my thoughts about faith, life, family, church, and a lot of other important and unimportant things.

A tragic week in Tampa Bay

I haven’t posted since last Tuesday because it’s been a crazy-busy week at St. James. Doing a lot of good ministry, but a few of us are ready for some down time now.

In the midst of the crazy-busy week, we’ve also experienced two tragedies in our greater community. First, two St. Pete police officers were killed in the line of duty, then just a few days ago, two teens were murdered by their own mother in our Tampa Palms community. Many people are grieving. Many people are dumbfounded. There’s no way to make sense out of what happened to the two students. No category or explanation to rationalize it. But it happened nonetheless.

As you pray this week, pray for the families of the fallen police officers. Pray for the father and mother of the murdered students. That father’s world was torn apart, and if the mother ever realizes what she’s done, she’ll have to find a way to live with her actions for the rest of her life. I cannot imagine what life will be like now for either of them, or for the police officers’ families left behind.

Even in times of extreme and inexplicable violence, God still sits on His throne. He did not cause these tragedies. They were not His will. These were acts perpetrated by depraved, broken persons. Pray for them. The human heart has the capacity for great evil and great good. Pray that, somehow, great evil will be overpowered by a greater good in these two situations.

One Response to “A tragic week in Tampa Bay”

  • James P Rash:

    Truly tragic events. My heart and prayers go out to all involved as well as their families. I could never imagine the pain that they are all going through. I could not imagine what the parents of these two individuals must be going through, to see their children on the news, knowing that their kids took the lives of these four people, maybe asking themselves “What went wrong?” and maybe blaming themselves to a degree. I pray that God comforts them in this time, as well.

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