Community grieves, gathers for prayers in wake of tragedy

People hold hands during a prayer vigil at Redemption Point Church on Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Chattanooga, Tenn. The vigil followed a shooting at both the Lee Highway Armed Forces Career Center and the Naval Operational Support Center on Amnicola Highway which left five dead, including the shooter, and a Chattanooga police officer wounded.

While the FBI raided a suburban home and Amnicola Highway employees waited, trapped by police activity, and victims' families huddled in the emergency room, a city was gathering to grieve.

In small, neighborhood churches, in arena-style sanctuaries, in ornate and intimate Catholic services, Chattanoogans, from all walks of life, stopped to pray for the families of those killed Thursday and to try to glean some meaning out of the tragedy that unfolded so unexpectedly.

Prayer vigils

* At UTC, the Student Veterans Organization is holding a vigil on campus at 9 a.m. today at the Fifth Street flagpole, open to all the public. * The Bessie Smith Cultural Center will be hosting a prayer vigil on the lawn of the center today at 5:30 p.m. to pray for the City of Chattanooga.