By Andrea Picciotti-Bayer

On the evening of June 17, 2015, 21-year old Dylann Roof walked into Charleston’s “Mother Emanuel” church. There, he found a group of the faithful about to begin a Bible study in the basement of the South Carolina church. They welcomed him and invited him to join them. He sat down. He listened and spoke. At the end of the hour, the participants began to pray. At that point, the young man opened fire in what became one of the country’s deadliest mass shootings at a place of worship. In the end, nine of those who had gathered that night to reflect on the Word of God lay dead. Only three survived.

The police caught Roof the following day. He was unrepentant. He hoped his evil act in targeting one of the country’s oldest black churches would ignite a race war. He was wrong.

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