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Apr 27
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Condolences for Nova Scotia

Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

The Shambhala Board extends our sincere condolences to the families and friends whose cherished loved ones died suddenly and violently in Nova Scotia on April 18th and 19th. We are united in our broken heartedness, even if physically separated.  

Kathryn Heckman, a senior teacher and practitioner in Shambhala, and a native Nova Scotian, said this at an interfaith gathering on behalf of the Halifax Shambhala Centre in response to the tragedy:

“Our hearts have been shattered by this unfathomable, unprecedented act of violence happening so close to home.There is so much shock and sorrow. 

I would like to offer a few remarks, especially to the families and friends whose cherished loved ones died suddenly and violently. Although they are no longer here with us to enjoy this precious gift of human life, they will always remain in our hearts and our memories. May our thoughts and prayers provide some consoling comfort to the families and friends at this time of their unbearable loss and suffering. 

Also, it seems important to recognize that the mourning extends to all Nova Scotians. Our ground has been shaken. For generations, we have treasured our peaceful rural communities, known for their close- knit, trusting and caring ways of being there for each other, especially in difficult times.” 

This tragedy has personally touched a long-time Shambhalian in Nova Scotia, David Burkholder, whose daughter Heidi Stevenson was killed. Heidi was a member of the RCMP and the mother of two. David would prefer to not be contacted at this time, but if you would like to send him a card and need his address, please email Madeline Conacher at [email protected]. We hold Heidi’s family in our minds and hearts and invite the Shambhala community to please keep all those affected by this tragedy in your personal practice. 

Here is a portrait of the lives lost and GoFundMe information to help the survivors. Financial support for the victims may also be sent to the Red Cross here. If you wish your offering to go directly to support the family of Shambhala member David Burkholder’s daughter, Heidi Stevenson, this is being managed through the RCMP Foundation, a registered non-profit at https://rcmp-f.ca. 

The Halifax Shambhala Centre has begun offering meditation and compassion practice on zoom each day, Monday through Friday, from 5-5:30 p.m. ADT.  All are welcome to join here. HSC is also offering online Sadhana of Kindness practice at 2:00 p.m. ADT each Wednesday.

Yours in heartbreak,

The Shambhala Board

Veronika Bauer
Mark Blumenfeld
John Cobb
Susan Ryan
Paulina Varas

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