The Common Good

Prayers of the People: For the Victims of the Texas Welfare Office Shooting

"Praying Hands." Image via Wylio http://bit.ly/smNXdA
"Praying Hands." Image via Wylio http://bit.ly/smNXdA

This is so horrendous it's almost too awful to type.

Early this morning at a welfare office in Laredo, Texas, a mother, desperate after months of being denied food stamps for her family, pulled a gun, shot her two young children and then herself.

The Huffington Post reports:

 

A Texas woman who for months was unable to qualify for food stamps pulled a gun in a state welfare office and staged a seven-hour standoff with police that ended with her shooting her two children before killing herself, officials said Tuesday.

The children, a 10-year-old boy and a 12-year-old girl, remained in critical condition Tuesday. The shooting took place at a Texas Department of Health and Human Services building in Laredo, where police said about 25 people were inside at the time.

Authorities identified the mother as Rachelle Grimmer, 38, and children Ramie and Timothy. Laredo police investigator Joe Baeza said Grimmer had recently moved to the border city from Zanesville, Ohio, about 30 miles east of Columbus.

Grimmer first applied for food stamps in July but was denied because she didn't turn in enough information, Texas Department of Health and Human Services spokeswoman Stephanie Goodman said.

Goodman said it wasn't immediately clear what information the mother was missing.

"We were still waiting, and if we had that, I don't know if she would still qualify or not," Goodman said.

 

We offer prayers for the children, who remain hospitalized, for their families, the welfare office workers, and all of those families who are struggling mightily to keep themselves afloat in these difficult days.

May God have mercy on us all and may justice roll down like mighty waters.

Amen.


 

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