NCEA Offers Prayers for Healing and Change in the Face of National Tragedy

The nation’s Catholic school communities unite in prayer on September 30, 2019.

Arlington, VA – The National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) joins the nation and the world in prayers for comfort, healing and change in light of the tragic shootings in Gilroy, CA, El Paso, TX and Dayton, OH.

NCEA echoes the response of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) which implores our nation to identify and enact meaningful and effective polices to end violence, "Things must change. Once again, we call for effective legislation that addresses why these unimaginable and repeated occurrences of murderous gun violence continue to take place in our communities. As people of faith, we continue to pray for all the victims, and for healing in all these stricken communities. But action is also needed to end these abhorrent acts."

It is with a commitment to change in mind, that NCEA encourages all Catholic schools to join together in prayer on September 30, 2019, the day after the feast of St. Michael the Archangel (September 29), the patron saint of first responders. By inviting local first responders to join them to celebrate their work and to show them gratitude for their commitment to service, Catholic schools can express their appreciation and recognition to those who strive to make the world a safer and better place.

"With heavy hearts, NCEA and Catholic school communities around the country stand united to offer prayers of solace for the families of the victims, the injured, the first responders and hospital staff and all of those in the communities that face this most terrible and heartbreaking loss," said Thomas Burnford, NCEA President/CEO. "As Catholic schools, we share a mission rooted in the power of prayer and also call for change and offer support to those around us. We are called to one another and our schools will continue to teach that to our students."

NCEA will share resources for Catholic schools including webinars and other tools to help educators, administrators and Catholic school leaders as they work to meet the important personal and emotional needs of our students and their families. In addition, a suggested Prayer Service in Response to a Mass Shooting may be found on the NCEA website.

Additional resources and prayers are available online:


In service of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, NCEA strengthens Catholic school communities by providing professional development, formation, leadership and advocacy.