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Religious, elected leaders pray for New Zealand victims, including family of Delaware woman

Imam Ibrahim Abdul Halim of New Zealand's Linwood Mosque holds hands with Father Felimoun El-Baramoussy of the Dunedin Coptic Church, as they walk near the mosque in Christchurch March 18, 2019. Prayer services are being held across the country and abroad after two mosque attacks in Christchurch March 15 that left at least 50 people dead and 20 seriously injured. (CNS photo/Edgar Su, Reuters)

Elected officials and religious leaders joined together in a local mosque to offer prayers for victims of last week’s shooting spree and mass murders in New Zealand, including the injured son and husband of a woman from Dover.

Delaware’s top elected officials came to together with religious leaders including Father Roger DiBuo, pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Bear and Diocese of Wilmington liaison for ecumenical and inter-religious groups. Father DiBuo was among those to speak to several hundred gathered for “an amazing evening of solidarity and prayer,” he said.

The gathering was Sunday at Masjid Isa Ibn-e-Maryam in Newark.

Dover native Alta Sacra had just moved to New Zealand with her family. Her husband and 2-year-old son had been shot in the attack at the Linwood Islamic Center in Christchurch Friday, according to Delawareonline.com. Both are recovering.

In a letter to Sheikh Abdel-Dahi in Newark, Bishop Malooly expressed condolences and prayers.

“I join my brother bishops, not only in the United States, but in New Zealand and across the world in pledging our continued prayers and support,” the bishop wrote. “I ask the Catholic community in Delaware and Maryland’s Eastern Shore to continue to pray that God will change the hearts of those who hate.”