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Haverhill

April 17, 2013

Local vigil, prayer services planned

Members of the Haverhill Clergy Association are hosting a prayer vigil today at 5:30 p.m. at GAR Park across from Haverhill Public Library to remember the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.

”It’s important to pray not just as Christians, but as people of faith,” said the Rev. Jane Bearden, who was a chaplain at Ground Zero in New York and during Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

“When disaster strikes, especially an attack, we tend to lose trust in other human beings,” said Bearden, pastor of Trinity Episcopal Church. “When we come together as people of faith, we witness to hope, we witness to being another way.”

The vigil’s theme is ‘Peace’ with the reading of psalms and the poem, “In the Wake of the Boston Marathon Bombings,” by the Rev. Susan L. Gleason, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Haverhill.

The poem reads in part, “They were running toward a finish line, a dream’s fulfillment, valiantly pursued; they ran with joy and with determination, anticipating high-fives and well-earned congratulations. And then, they were running from a crime scene, a nightmare realized, an evil achieved; help us to seek not vengence, Lord, but justice; to dry another tear, to hold a hand; to say that love’s the only answer ever, to recognize through doubt, higher command.’”

Also, masses and prayer services will be held across the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston. For up to date postings, log on to: http://www.thegoodcatholiclife.com/prayforboston.

“We stand in solidarity with our ecumenical and interfaith colleagues in the commitment to witness the greater power of good in our society and to work together for healing,” Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley said in a statement.

Through O’Malley, Pope Francis also sent a message of condolence to Massachusetts residents.

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