On the way to Krakow for World Youth Day, Brother Alois learned of the hostage-taking in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray and murder of Father Jacques Hamel. He then sent to Bishop Dominique Lebrun, archbishop of Rouen, and the vicar general of the diocese a short message of friendship to express his dismay and communion, and to ensure those responsible for the Church in that area of the prayers of the Taizé brothers and the young people gathered around the community.
Brother Alois also wrote this prayer to be read at Taizé, in Krakow during the prayers led there by the Taizé brothers, and in St. Malo, where young French Protestants are meeting these days:
God of mercy, enable us to realize that even in misfortune and in trials you are very close to us. The ongoing violence disconcerts us and touches us deeply. We entrust to you the deceased priest at Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, his family and the local Church of Rouen in mourning. In the face of hatred, we want to resist fear and return again and again to the wellsprings of peace, creating friendship and brotherhood around us .