In President's Messages, United News

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted

August 5, 2019

In the early morning hours of Sunday, August 4, 2019, 24-year-old Connor Betts of Bellbrook, Ohio, opened fire on thousands of people outside bars and restaurants in the Oregon District of Dayton, Ohio. Within a minute, 9 people had been killed and 27 injured. We thank God that Dayton police officers were already there and stopped the senseless massacre within that first minute of shooting before many more people could have been killed.

Our prayers are with all those who lost their lives and their loved ones. We pray for God’s healing power to touch those who were wounded, and we lift up the first responders and medical personnel who tended to the care of the 27 injured in local hospitals.

Ten weeks ago, the Dayton area suffered another disaster when 15 tornadoes ripped through the city and the surrounding county, causing one death, many hospitalizations and the loss or damage of countless homes and apartments.

In the midst of these natural and man-made disasters, suffering people need to hear the word of God reminding them that “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those crushed in spirit.”

May God continue to use Christian chaplains, pastors and lay people to help suffering people to experience the living presence of God in their time of need, whether they are in Dayton, Ohio; El Paso, Texas, or one of countless other cities experiencing loss, grief and devastation.

I pray that all those suffering today might know that God weeps with them in their time of pain and will give them the love and strength they need to face the challenges of their future.

Grace and peace,

Dr. Kent Millard
United Theological Seminary


The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.
PSALM 34:18

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