Sacred Heart University holds prayer service for New Zealand mosque shooting victims

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FAIRFIELD -

Staff and students at Sacred Heart University held a prayer service Monday for the victims of the New Zealand mosque shootings.

Religious leaders from multiple faiths led the service. Imam Gazmend Aga said he was shocked when he learned of the attacks on the two mosques.

Students with no personal connection to New Zealand or Islam said it was important for them to be there.

"We live in a society today where we're just getting so accustomed to this and it's really just disgusting to think about," said student Michael Zawadzki.

Attendees said that these gatherings are encouraging and show there are people who choose love over hate.

"I am very glad and happy as a Muslim, as an Imam... to see the sincerity and to see this support," said Aga.

Aga told News 12 that clergy, politicians and others who influence society need to be careful about their messages to their followers when it comes to bigotry and rhetoric that could spread violence.

Sacred Heart University is a Catholic school and has nearly 200 Muslim students.

MORE: Prayer service for New Zealand held at Sacred Heart University

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