Prayer Vigil Planned Following Deadly Shooting At Montco Church

A prayer vigil is planned following a shooting in a suburban Philadelphia church during Sunday services that killed one church member.

Keystone Fellowship Church has announced a 7 p.m. Monday gathering at its Schwenksville campus in Montgomery County, 13 miles from the Montgomeryville campus where the shooting occurred.

The church sent a letter to members of the congregation on Monday that read:

To Our Keystone Family:

Words can never convey the sorrow we are feeling in light of the tragic shooting at our Montgomeryville campus on Sunday, April 24. My heart is deeply burdened for the two families whose lives were changed in an instant, and for our church family individually and collectively as we grapple with the shock and pain of it all.

We need healing. We need the peace and comfort of God like never before.

My prayer is that the healing process will begin tonight as we gather at our Skippack campus. This is a private service, just for our church family, but it is also an opportunity to approach God’s throne of grace in a time of prayer for our church and community.

I want you to know that even though I am deeply saddened, I am also hopeful. We serve a God who brings good out of the most tragic of circumstances, and I believe that we have an opportunity to unite as the body of Christ and overcome evil with good. Keystone has always been a church that loves God and loves people, not only with our words but with our actions.

May the peace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ fill our hearts and minds in the days and weeks to come, and may we emerge from this tragedy stronger and more united than ever before.

For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence,
for my hope is from him.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken. Psalm 62:5-6

John Cope
Lead Pastor,
Keystone Fellowship Church

The church said in a post on its Facebook page that members were "shocked and heartbroken" by Sunday's events and were "coming together as a church family ... for a time of prayer and comfort."

District Attorney Kevin Steele said an 11 a.m. Sunday "disturbance" involving two members escalated into an altercation that ended in the shooting shortly before 11:30 a.m. Sunday.

Twenty-seven-year-old Robert Braxton of Montgomeryville died shortly afterward. Authorities are investigating whether the shooting was justified under the law.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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