LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18)– The tragedy the happened in New Zealand Friday is being felt around the world, including right here in Lexington.
In an attack broadcast live, at least 49 people were killed in mass shootings at two mosques in New Zealand. Worshippers were attending prayers at the time of the shootings.
The actions of hate perpetrated thousands of miles away stood in stark contrast to the messages of love conveyed in Lexington’s Masjid Baleel Mosque Friday afternoon.
“It was said by the Prime Minister of New Zealand that this was one of the darkest days in New Zealand histor, and I agree, but it is also one of bright days also, because darkness will always go away when you let in the light,” said Dr. Jamil Farooqui, a board member of the Masjid Baleel Mosque.
The victims in the mosque attacks were preparing for Friday prayer, the holiest time of the week. Muslim leaders say the violence will not shake their resolve.
“We are close, we are united, we are supporting each other, we are not afraid of hate, nothing will stop us from practicing our religion, practicing our faith,” said Farooqui.
The support in Lexington extended beyond the Muslim community from the police, to leaders of other faith communities who attended Friday prayer.
“Today is a day to lament, to be sad, to shed some tears together, but also a warning not to be complacent,” said Bishop Mark Vankoevering of the Episcopal Diocese of Lexington.