Detroit Archbishop ‘Heartbroken’ Over Michigan School Shooting

The suspect, a 15-year-old student at Oxford High School, opened fire midday on Nov. 30.

Students, parents, teachers and community members gather for a vigil at Lake Point Community Church following a shooting at Oxford High School on Nov. 30 in Oxford, Michigan. Catholic clergy also prayed with the community. Four people were killed and six others wounded by the alleged shooter, a 15-year-old student who is now in police custody.
Students, parents, teachers and community members gather for a vigil at Lake Point Community Church following a shooting at Oxford High School on Nov. 30 in Oxford, Michigan. Catholic clergy also prayed with the community. Four people were killed and six others wounded by the alleged shooter, a 15-year-old student who is now in police custody. (photo: Matthew Hatcher / Getty Images)

Archbishop Allen Vigneron of Detroit said he was “heartbroken” on Tuesday after hearing of the “horrific tragedy” of a school shooting outside the city earlier in the day. 

“I am heartbroken to hear of the horrific tragedy at Oxford High School,” Archbishop Vigneron said in a Nov. 30 tweet.

“On behalf of the clergy, religious and faithful of the Archdiocese of Detroit, I offer heartfelt prayers for the victims, their families, and all those affected in our community,” he added. 

In a follow-up tweet, the archbishop said: “May our Blessed Mother wrap all those wounded — physically, emotionally, or spiritually — in her loving mantle and offer them consolation in the difficult days ahead.”


The suspect, a 15-year-old student at Oxford High School, opened fire midday on Nov. 30. The school is located in Oxford, Michigan, about 45 miles north of Detroit. Four students have died as a result of injuries suffered, and six more students and a teacher are gravely injured. 

On Wednesday Ethan Crumbly was charged with murder and related charges.

According to the local sheriff’s department, the boy did not resist arrest. 

The Twitter account for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops commented, “We join @DetArchbishop in offering our prayers for the tragedy at #oxfordhighschool.”

According to a tweet from the Michigan Catholic Conference, St. Joseph Catholic Church in Lake Orion held a Mass for “healing and peace” Nov. 30.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by today's senseless act of violence #oxfordhighschool,” it added.

St. Joseph’s parish is the closest Catholic church to Oxford, Detroit Catholic reported. Father John Carlin, the associate pastor at St. Joseph’s, gave the homily to a crowd of students, parents and parishioners, according to Detroit Catholic.

Father Carlin reminded those who filled the church that God hears their prayers and cries and said that nothing is stronger than Christ’s victory over death, Detroit Catholic reported.

Father Carlin said that “we don't understand” when we experience a loss of friends or loved ones. He said that Christ “wants not only to walk with us in that darkness, but to let us know that he is there.” 

“He’s not going anywhere, and he never will,” he added.

Clergy from St. Joseph counseled those present after Mass, Detroit Catholic reported. Eucharistic adoration was offered afterwards, and confessions were heard. as well.

Pope Francis conferred on Catholics the lay ministries of catechist and lector at a Mass for the Sunday of the Word of God on Jan. 23.

Pope Francis: The Word of God Rekindles Hope

Pope Francis celebrated Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica for the fourth-annual Sunday of the Word of God, during which he, for the first time, formally conferred upon lay Catholics the ministries of lector and catechist.