Yesterday horrendous violence rained down upon my city. Upon my brothers and sisters working at Von Maur, upon my brothers and sisters doing their Christmas shopping.
Regardless of how much speculation and questioning that occurs, no one will ever know the full intentions of Robert (Robbie) Hawkins, who took the lives of eight persons, wounded many others, and then took his own life.
You see, that’s the unseen victim in every suicide — the questions never cease and the answers never come. Sure, the frenzy of media feeding will produce enough info to patch-work together some sort of theory; but the only person that knows for sure what was going through his head can no longer tell us.
My prayers are with each and every family affected by this tragedy. The murder of your loved ones is unthinkable, it’s beyond our mind’s power to fathom. I wish I could comfort each one of you. Please know of the many prayers offered for you and yours.
In the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed we pray each week at Mass this line, “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life . . . ” But too many among us refuse to acknowledge the truth of the statement, or at least refuse to believe the Lord is the author of life. To Him alone belongs the right to create life, to Him alone belongs the right to take life. Such was the case at the foundation of the world, and such is the case today.
But we refuse to understand that — and anytime we try to play God, anytime we try to assert our own sovereignty over human life tragedy always results. It makes us numb (over time) to how precious life is. When God creates life in the womb human history is uniquely changed forever — a new life immensely increases the value of our world. When we attack the life God has given it destroys a precious part of our human family.
You see, we live in a culture that takes death too lightly. A culture that aborts in the womb every third life that God creates. A culture that accepts the euthanizing of the elderly and the terminal patient. A culture that repeats shooting in school after school and in mall after mall. I am sick to death of the cheapening of human life through our culture of death.
Please join me in praying, right now, for an end to our culture of death. Nine persons were killed for no reason whatsoever yesterday – pray for a conversion of hearts, a metanoia, to return to treating God as if He really was our sovereign King, and our Lord, who alone gives (and takes) life.
And amidst the grief of this tragedy, remember the next lines of the Creed – I believe in the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. It’s this belief alone that can comfort us.
The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18)
Jesus wept at the tomb of his friend, Lazarus (John 11:33)
May you feel the closeness of Jesus as He comforts your broken hearts.