Tragic. Horrific. Unimaginable.
These are just a few of the headline words used to express the shock and dismay of the merciless attack at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday morning. Children massacred – it’s still almost too painful to contemplate but I try to understand; to make some sense of it. But I cannot comprehend the hate so virulent in one individual that he would commit the most despicable crime against the most innocent of victims.
As a citizen I am outraged. As a parent and grandparent I am shaken. As a child of God I am broken-hearted.
There’s a part of me that wants to “put it away”; to not talk about it; not think about it. I would like to tell myself that it happened far away and was random and can NEVER touch me or my precious grandchildren. But as I write this, the tears stream down my face thinking of those grandfathers in Connecticut that won’t get to hold their grandsons and granddaughters on their laps again; who won’t hear giggles and see sweet smiles. Who will never again get another tight squeeze around the neck or a precious kiss on a craggy old face.
Today at Mass our priest asked us to lift up those families in prayer. He implored us to be THE PEACE that we can be in our own families; in our own communities.
I can’t undo the hideous attack that was perpetrated on those children in Connecticut but I can be an agent of peace. I can deplore violence. And I can defuse anger and hatred in my own life. I can try to love as Jesus taught us.
Won’t you join me? Let’s mend broken relationships. Let’s try to ease the pain of others. Let’s stop buying music, movies and video games that glamorize violence. Let’s ask our members of Congress to actively work on real gun control legislation. Let’s stop reacting to violence with more violence.
There is hope amidst the horror. And as we enter into the fourth week of Advent in preparation of the Christ Child, let’s truly create some peace on earth.
The peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7