GARY, Ind (CBS) — Two people were shot, one fatally, outside a Gary church following a funeral Saturday afternoon.
According to police, officers responded to a call at 2:19 p.m. for a man shot in the 600 block of Rhode Island Court. While en route, they received a call of another person shot. When they arrived, officers found an unresponsive man outside the church and another man who had been shot inside the church.
The shooting happened in the parking lot of Sts. Monica and Luke Catholic Church at 645 Rhode Island Court in Gary, a church secretary said.
The church secretary said the shooting happened after an off-site funeral when people had just arrived at the church for a mercy meal. The people were just getting ready to eat when they heard the gunshots, ran into a room and barricaded the door.
Today the Diocese of Gary received word from Father Michael Surufka, OFM, rector of the Cathedral and pastor of Ss. Monica and Luke in Gary, that a tragic event had occurred. Father Surufka explained that a local family received permission to rent the parish hall at Ss. Monica & Luke to hold a Repast (luncheon) following the burial of a young family member. As the group arrived for the gathering today, gunshots fired near the area struck two persons as they approached the church building, killing one person and injuring another. Father Surufka confirmed that the family who rented the hall are not parishioners.Most Rev. Robert J. McClory, Bishop of Gary, speaking on behalf of Father Surufka and Ss. Monica & Luke, asks the faithful of the diocese to join with the Gary community in praying for this family who has lost so much. Bishop McClory will be joining in prayer with Father Surufka and the parishioners Sunday morning.“We pray that the family and their loved ones may be comforted as they begin to process this terrible tragedy,” said the bishop. “Let’s recommit to compassionately care for one another, ardently stand for the value of all life and offer hope in our merciful God. May this scourge of violence end. Let us pray that our hearts be not hardened but moved with compassion. In a world filled with sorrow and brokenness, let us offer encouragement and peace.”