Chandan KhannaPallbearers carry the casket of Irma Linda Garcia and her husband, Jose Antonio Garcia, during their funeral Mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Uvalde, Texas, on June 1, 2022. – Irma Garcia, a teacher, was killed May 24 in the elementary school shooting and her husband Joe Garcia died two days later of a heart attack.
The national response to the tragic gun violence of recent weeks, including mass shootings at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and a hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma, have fallen along predictable party lines. The U.S. Bishops and many Catholic voices have responded in ways that address both policy issues related to gun access as well as other underlying cultural factors. Register senior editor Jonathan Liedl will report on what he calls the “both/and” Catholic response to this national crisis. But first we turn to a Church leader who more than 20 years ago was among the first Catholics who responded to the mass shooting at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Jim Beckman, who was a part of the youth ministry team at St. Francis Cabrini Church, shares how a mass shooting in his town changed forever the way he did ministry.