Episcopal Priest Dies in Ellicott City Church Shootings VIDEO

By Brian Hooks
The Patch
May 6, 2012

Mary-Marguerite Kohn of Arbutus.

[with video]

Mary-Marguerite Kohn, co-rector of St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Ellicott City, has died of injuries suffered in a shooting Thursday night in which a church administrator was also killed, Howard County police said Sunday.

A man whose body was found nearby is believed to have shot the women and then turned the gun on himself, police said.

Kohn, 62, of Arbutus, was pronounced dead at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma unit Saturday night, police said.

A family friend said her family wanted to donate her organs. Her body was transported to the medical examiner for autopsy, according to police.

Kohn was found with gunshot wounds in a church office after a worker called police to report finding her and the body of Brenda Brewington, 59, of Ellicott City, a church administrator.

After a search by dozens of police who swarmed the neighborhood, the body of Douglas Franklin Jones, 56, was found in a wooded area near the church, with a handgun nearby.

Police say he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Police said Jones had regularly visited the church's food bank, but recently he had become "belligerent and argumentative."

Police said they believed Jones was living in a campsite in the woods where they found personal belongings.

Church officials Sunday vowed to honor the memories of the slain women.

"We came down and decided we want to keep worshipping despite the tragic events on Thursday," said Craig Stuart-Paul, warden of St. Peter's.

"Both of the ladies were the kindest, biggest-hearted ladies you could meet.

"Mary-Marguerite was really one of the most amazing women I've met, one of the kindest, most gentle people.

"She never turned a person away and, even in her death, she's bringing life through the donation of her organs."

He said the incident won't deter the church from helping those in need.

"The church has ministered to the poor for thousands of years, and we will continue to minister to the poor and needy and we won't do it from behind bulletproof glass."

Scott Slater, Canon to the Ordinary for the Archdiocese of Maryland, said churchgoers were coping with the deaths in different ways.

"Mary-Marguerite was a colleague of mine, and so I am sad also for losing a colleague throughout this very difficult situation. We're all dealing with it in our various ways, as any of us would."

Kohn was listed as an affiliate faculty member at the Loyola Graduate School of pastoral counseling. Part of her studies involved researching the needs of survivors of clergy sexual abuse, according to the Sirdan Institute, a non-profit organization based in Brooklandville that helps people recover from traumatic events.


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