Jennifer Sebena was a member of Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wisconsin, and a police officer in the local force. On Christmas Eve, she was brutally shot to death while on duty. Her church and city were stunned when her husband Benjamin, an Iraq veteran and active Elmbrook member, was arrested and accused of killing her. Veteran preacher Stuart Briscoe, a friend of Jennifer's family and minister-at-large of Elmbrook, preached her funeral sermon, which went viral in the days following her service.

Unfortunately, the story of a life cut short is a common headline. Recent murders in Colorado, Oregon, New York, and Connecticut have shocked the U.S. public. Most pastors will have to deal with tragic deaths—murder, suicide, accident—at some point in their ministry.

But in the aftermath of traumatic violence, what can a preacher say? Leadership's editorial team sat down with Briscoe to hear why he preached what he preached to a shocked church and their community. You ...

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