A large crowd of students, faculty, and staff gathered Wednesday morning for a community prayer service to offer intercessory prayers for all those who have been impacted by the tragic events at Virginia Tech earlier this week.
Led by the Rev. Dr. Steve Weisz, campus minister, a number of students took an active role in leading prayers, responsive readings, and scripture readings during the brief service that was held inside the Living Room of the Niswonger Commons building.
The prayer service was organized to allow the Tusculum community an opportunity to come together to reflect on the tragedy and pray for those at Virginia Tech, to remember and pray for those of the Tusculum community who may have connections to the victims at Virginia Tech, and for the Tusculum community itself, said Dr. David McMahan, vice president of student affairs for the college.
The service followed a liturgical order of service with responsive readings, confessionary and intercessory prayers, and scripture readings, all led by students. Among the scripture readings were passages from Ecclesiastes and Psalms. The passage from Ecclesiastes 3 was the familiar passage about “a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.”
Also read was a passage from Psalm 91 about God’s protection and strength, as well as the well known 23rd Psalm.
Dr. Weisz then led the group in a prayer asking God to comfort and strengthen the families of the victims of the Virginia Tech tragedy, the survivors, and all the students, faculty, and staff of Virginia Tech.
After the service, Connie Kretchmar-Sitz, the college’s counselor, was available to speak to those wished to talk to someone about the tragedy.
The service also brought local and regional media to campus, including reporters from the local newspaper and radio station as well as those from two Tri-Cities television stations, WJHL and WCYB.