SANFORD, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - A mass to remember beloved French priest father Jacques Hamel was held on Wednesday afternoon dand rew Catholics from across Seminole County to the St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Sanford.
“When something like this happens, it is very, very important to take the time to stop everything and think about what's happening," said Brigitte Jensen, Honorary Consul of France
Last month, terrorists reportedly with the Islamic State took several people hostage at a Catholic church in France, before slitting the throat of father Jacques Hamel at the altar -- police shot and killed both suspects in the sanctuary.
“To attack a priest is really to touch the very deep identity of the French people. That's why it was really a very big shock for everybody," said Father Marc Vernoy of the St. Thomas More.
Father Vernoy delivered a mass that preached love despite that hate that transpired. He shared a special connection to Father Hamel, who presided over the married of his brother.
"We pray also for all the recent victims of this violence that happened in Europe and also here and even in Orlando recently we pray for them because they need prayers," said Father Vernoy.
Parishioners offered their prayers for the friends and family of Father Hamel, but they say it's difficult to erase the tragedy that happened.
“I felt attacked! A hundred percent, it hit home,” said Jensen.
The attack marked the fifth terror attack in France this year.