At least 17 people were killed this past Wednesday as a single gunman opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. The suspect was 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, a former student. The public school, located outside Boca Raton, was closed for the rest of the week as students, teachers, and parents grieve.

Authorities report that the shooter pulled the fire alarm to lure students from their classrooms and then opened fire. Many students and teachers fled, while some hid in classrooms and closets.

Several authorities have spoken out about this tragic event. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has ordered all government flags flown at half-staff through Monday in honor of victims. And President Donald Trump stated the following during a press conference: “We mourn for all of those who lost their lives. We comfort the grieving and the wounded. And we hurt for the entire community of Parkland, Florida that is now in shock, in pain, and searching for answers.”

Daniel Cardinal DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops also made a statement, asking God to comfort grieving families. As Wednesday was also the beginning of Lent, he asked Catholics to, “unite our prayers and [Lenten] sacrifices for the healing and consolation of all those who have been affected by violence in these last weeks and for a conversion of heart, that our communities and nation will be marked by peace.” Click here to read the full statement.

This shooting is among the 10 most deadly shootings in US history.

Lindsay Rudegeair is Managing Editor of the Magis Center blog.

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