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Elon community prays for victims of Boston bombing

Dozens of people gathered Tuesday in the Sacred Space of the Numen Lumen Pavilion to remember victims, their families and the heroes of the devastating attack one day earlier.

Elon University Chaplain Jan Fuller welcomed the campus community to a prayer service for expressing grief, sadness, despair - and hope - following an attack at the 2013 Boston Marathon.

Members of the Elon University community came together in grief and reflection Tuesday afternoon as the nation struggled to understand a bombing at the Boston Marathon one day earlier that killed three people and injured scores more.

About 60 students, faculty and staff gathered in the Sacred Space of the Numen Lumen Pavilion, some holding hands, others with their arms wrapped around the shoulders of friends. Led by staff in the Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life, the service featured prayers and remarks that concluded with participants each lighting votive candles to honor those affected by the bombings.

“Let us hold patiently to the hope that good is going to win over evil,” said Elon University Chaplain Jan Fuller. “Be sure that God is here with us, in this place, and in our hearts that cry out for mercy and grace.”


Campus spiritual leaders led short discussions with students about the attacks and why they may seem as personal as they do. Only a handful of hands were raised when asked who had run a marathon; many more shot up when asked if they knew someone who had.

The April 16 prayer service concluded with participants lighting candles in honor of those impacted by the bombings at the Boston Marathon one day earlier.

And nearly everyone raised their hands when asked if they knew of people in Boston. “Most of the injured were actually people watching the marathon,” said Hillel director Nancy Luberoff. “This touches all of us, because we all could have been there with our families and friends.”

Nine percent of the Elon University student body hails from Massachusetts, second only to North Carolina among the list of states represented in campus enrollment figures.

Students who wish to talk more with Truitt Center staff can call (336) 278-7729. Counseling services are also available through the R.N. Ellington Health & Counseling Center by calling (336) 278-7280 during normal business hours.

Eric Townsend,
4/16/2013 5:30 PM