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Lamentation over Newtown, CT

A reflection from a Canadian...

Lamentation over Newtown, CT Dear Charlotte, Daniel, Olivia, Josephine, Ana, Dylan, Madeleine, Catherine, Chase, Jesse, James, Grace, Emilie, Jack, Noah, Caroline, Jessica, Avielle, Benjamin, and Allison, The news of your deaths broke out only about ten days before the world remembers and celebrates the birth of the one who came into the world to rescue our damaged and broken humanity. My heart sunk and my mind looked for reasons and understanding. Quietness and silence were what I encountered. It was not anger that I felt. It was tremendous sadness, the kind of sadness which encouraged me to allow myself to identify with your families, your parents and many others who know and love you. We all have lost so much. You hardly started your lives. You didn't get the chance to see and explore more of the beauty of life, the creativity of your mind and the ability of your heart to love. Your family just got a small window into your world of compassion, kindness and intelligence. It was shut down without any prior warning. The journey they were about to have with you was cut short. All they can do now is to try their best to remember and cherish what they were able to have with you. We will never get the chance to enjoy and appreciate the kind of men and women all of you would become. The world has lost a great deal because all of you were gifted and fearfully and wonderfully created by God (Psalm 139:14). Many of us don't know you personally. But as I listened to the various accounts about you from those who knew you well, I had the feeling as if a part of me was ripped away because you are of God and you revealed His beauty to the world. The news people kept talking about how we would like to know why a lonely, intelligent and awkward young man could commit such a horrific act. They talked about his mental condition. They talked about his family situation. No one could come inside his head and truly comprehend the darkness and the hopelessness he had experienced. Somehow I had a rather intriguing image as I prayed for you and your families. It was an image of how you all would have embraced this very young man if you had gotten to know him. You would have given him a listening ear. You would have granted him a caring presence. You would have shared your lunch or a cookie with him. You would tell him not to worry because he was not alone. You would laugh and cry with him. You would ask your moms and dads to give him a ride. That is why you are being missed so much. There is no human answer that will help us to cope with what happened and satisfy our need to gain some sense of stability. There is only faith and belief that although your lives were taken away from us, you will never die in the lives of those who love you because God expressed His love to others through you although it was for such a short time. I know that you are now at peace in the presence of the One who loves and knows you more than anyone else. So, rest well my little friends knowing that there is no evil in this world that will be able to erase God's goodness to the world in you. As we send you back to God, we walk away in tears because it does hurt so much. That is the tension we need to accept in loving God and loving others while living in this world. For this faith alone I am able to say to you with Godly solemn confidence: "Merry Christmas to you". You are now indeed discovering the true "Joy" that we can only talk and dream about. “Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."” (Matthew 19:14) A Prayer of Love Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, not knowing any hour or time. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, that gives and expects nothing in return. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, that just loves to give and give. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, that is meek and kind and sincere. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, for faults are lost in Your love's sea. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, to laugh with those who laugh, and to weep with those who weep. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, never-ending and never too busy to stop. Help me, Lord, to be like Your love, to give my life that others may live. —Maria Fontaine God Bless... Dat Nguyen

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