Friday, September 15, 2017

Prayers for an end to violence


A dear friend's son, Marty,  teaches at a small high school in a little town of 500 in Eastern Washington.

Two days ago a troubled student came to that school carrying a rifle and a pistol, and began shooting in the hallway outside Marty's classroom. Marty shepherded as many kids as he could into his classroom, tended to a wounded girl, and called 911, but out in the hallway one boy was killed and others were wounded before a janitor wrestled the shooter to the ground.

The shooter claimed he was tired of being bullied.

The guns came from his father's gun safe; his father had given him the combination.

Facts.

All facts.

Facts that seem to repeat themselves over and over; facts that shock, wound, and kill; facts that traumatize a whole community and carry echoes out into the world.

Why does it happen? How can we stop it? What can we do to limit the probability of recurrence?

And how -- tempted as we are to place blame on the shooter, the bully, the father -- can we move beyond blame to institutional reform?

And how on earth do people cope who can no longer pray?

I ask your prayers -- for the gunman, the victims, the students, the teachers, their families, their community, and our society; for all the broken hearts and pain; for the bullies and the bullied -- for an end to the violence that arises when we fail to be kind to one another.

1 comment:

Fred and Kris Jessett said...

Thank you, Diane, for your prayers and those of others who read your blog.
I appreciate your work so much. Too many days I do not take time to contemplate and then later I find I don't have the resources I need when things are not going well. So thank you for your pictures and thoughts.
Fred