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Carmichael vigil comforts those touched by Connecticut tragedy

11:14 PM, Dec 14, 2012   |    comments
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A candlelight vigil held at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Carmichael Friday night

CARMICHAEL, CA - A candlelight vigil at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Carmichael served as a central gathering place for those touched by the Connecticut elementary school tragedy Friday.

News of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary left many feeling overwhelmed with emotion and looking for somewhere to be among others who shared those same feelings. No matter how far you were from Newtown, Conn., what happened there seemed close to home.

To Joseph Garcia, the victims felt all too familiar.

"My wife is actually a first grade teacher. I'm in the process of having my first child in April," Garcia said, mindful of the first grade teacher and children who died in the tragedy.

With so much sadness everywhere he looked, Joseph Gomes reached out to church leaders at St. Michael's to create a common space where anyone could come to light candles, show support for the victims and try offer offer some comfort to one another.

"Camraderie, hope, knowing that there are still good people in the world, that it's not all just the evil that we've been seeing all morning," Gomes said.

Some who attended the vigil weren't sure what they hoped to get out of the experience beyond simply an opportunity to express their feelings.

"I just can't even imagine how they feel right now, the whole families in Connecticut, and it's a rough time, and I felt we needed to come out here and show support," Garcia said.

Following the vigil, church leaders invited everyone inside to reflect on the day's tragedy.


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