Honoring Lives Lost from Gun Violence

“To heal a person, one must first be a person. We are all spiritual beings. Healthcare is a spiritual discipline.”  
— Daniel Sulmalsy MD, PhD,  The Rebirth of the Clinic: An Introduction to Spirituality in Health Care (2006)

It’s hard to find the words and we are struggling with what to say. But how can we not say anything, not acknowledge the shootings, the grief, the tremendous loss, and suffering. 

In continuing our commitment to speak up against injustice, racism, and acts of violence committed against people of color, SWHPN is issuing this statement to acknowledge the grief, loss, and heaviness in the world right now. SWHPN condemns the recent racist attacks in Buffalo, NY, where 10 people were murdered by a white supremacist; the murders of Taiwanese-Americans in a church in Laguna Woods, California; the massacre of 19 schoolchildren and two teachers in Uvalde; the killings at a medical facility in Tulsa, Oklahoma. These are just the acts within communities that made national headlines in the past few weeks. Yet gun violence remains a public health crisis that disproportionately affects Black and Brown communities. As of June 7, 2022, there have been 8,415 gun deaths and 247 mass shootings this year in the United States (1). 

Additionally, we also must acknowledge passing the grim milestone of the million-plus lives that have been lost due to Covid-19 in the U.S, and the millions more affected by long Covid.

How can SWHPN help? 

Our members will continue to join with and work to relieve suffering in all its forms, even while we ourselves, as grief workers, are feeling overwhelming loss, pain, and anger. We want to provide resources for grief support and strategies for coping with the continual difficult news we are all faced with.  We urge all our members to work for greater equity and compassion within our communities. 

To bring together our collective pain and hopes, we will be holding a virtual space for reflection and remembrance on Wednesday, June 15 at 3:00 pm EST / 12:00 pm PST, in a Zoom room. There we will hold space for any SWHPN member that wishes to join us, to reflect and remember together. We invite you to bring your hearts, your tears, hopes, and commitments together in solidarity with the bereft of Buffalo, Laguna Woods, Uvalde, and all of our communities beleaguered in sorrow.  There is a lot of heartbreak and heaviness in the world and being together can be not only comforting but also empowering. We will facilitate meaningful readings, music, silence, and the sharing of thoughts and beloved names if participants desire. 

To join us on Wednesday, click here to register. We will send a reminder with the Zoom link on the morning of June 15.



"Tears water our growth." -William Shakespeare



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