Bishop Richard Pates issued the following statement on the school tragedy in Connecticut on Friday.
"I share the overwhelming shock and sadness of all at the inexplicable death rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on Friday morning. Our heartfelt prayers go out to the victims and to their families, especially the parents of children either killed or injured as they come to grips with this senseless tragedy. May they know that we stand in solidarity with them at this time. I ask all of the Diocese of Des Moines' parishes to incorporate special prayers in their liturgies of the Third Sunday of Advent. Despite the huge shadows and overwhelming grief, we know that Emmanuel - God with us, is present even in these darkest of moments."