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‘And Jesus Wept’

By Susan Ciancio

As parents, or as anyone who cares about children or their fellow human beings, we should be terrified. We should be angry. Yesterday we heard of yet another gunman going into yet another public place and killing yet more innocent people. This time it was children.

Nineteen children went to school yesterday and never made it home. Two adults never made it home. The tragedy in Texas is far reaching, and the country mourns with the families of all the victims.

As a pro-life people, we are sickened by the grip that the culture of death has on our country. We are sickened that people cannot be safe in school, or in grocery stores, or on public streets.

Crime is rampant because evil is rampant. Yet when tragedies like this occur, it seems the entire country bands together to grieve. For a few days.

But though we all grieve, it doesn’t appear that the culture is really changing. In fact, it seems at times like it’s getting worse.

This violence against our fellow human beings has to stop. Too many innocent people—born and preborn—have lost their lives.

As I read the news and felt just a fraction of what those poor families feel, I couldn’t help but think of Christ after the death of Lazarus and upon seeing Lazarus’ sister Mary, who was distraught over his death. The Gospel of John said simply, “And Jesus wept.”

Jesus wept because He was filled with compassion for Mary. He wept because He loved Lazarus. Though Christ knew that He would raise Lazarus and that an earthly death is not the final word, He understood the feeling of losing someone He deeply cared for.

We know that Jesus wept yesterday. He wept for the children and adults so senselessly killed. He wept for their families. He wept for the gunman. And He continues to weep with those who are suffering.

Our faith encourages us to remain strong, even when the pain is crippling. This is not always easy, but knowing that Christ walks with us in our grief makes that grief feel a little less devastating and a little less lonely.

We may think that there’s not much we can do. We may feel helpless to effect change. We may look around at the world and feel lost and hopeless. But we must remember that, in Christ, we have hope. Through Him, we can make a difference.

It is our responsibility to help build a culture of life every day. It doesn’t have to be on a grand scale. Most of us are not politicians and cannot make sweeping societal changes. But we need not have that kind of influence to change hearts and minds or to be the light of Christ to others.

Building a culture of life begins with us all, and it begins at home. So, tonight, I challenge you to turn off the TV, put down the devices, and pray with your family. Pray for the families affected by violence. Pray for those who feel they must resort to violence. Pray for our culture to change because the further and further we get from God and morality, the closer we get to chaos and anarchy. And chaos and anarchy lead only to evil.

After you pray, devise ways to spread the light of Christ by doing good works for others. Explain to your children the importance of building a culture of life and of living a life filled with moral actions that help others see the value in all people.

But most of all, remember those three words from the Gospel of John: “And Jesus wept.” Remember them because they not only show us that Christ feels compassion when we hurt but that He cares for every single one of us. No exceptions. He cares because we belong to Him. We are His.

Let us pray that our culture begins to understand this love so that we make Jesus weep no more.

Photo courtesy of Sarie Q