Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Holy Innocents

I have not written of them yet.

It is not because I've been living under a rock or because I'm insensitive to the affliction that has occurred in Newtown, CT. It is because I can hardly think of the killing of children without feeling the reopening of the wound left by my own child's death. I know it may seem hyperbolic--perhaps overly dramatic--to think of a miscarriage in comparison with the immeasurable pain of these children's deaths. And maybe I am way out of line--for some, my making this association is probably hurtful. But I can't see it that way. I know that my words will probably seem trite to those so closely connected to this outrage. I only hope that my reflection here breathes empathy, not false comparison, because when I think of those poor babies in Newtown, I think of my own.

What I see is the wound in my heart which is identifiable with those parents who have lost their children due to this evil. What I see is the injustice of this, the unfairness, the horror, the trauma, the inconsolable grief of these parents, which are akin to my own suffering. The circumstances are very different, but they were our children all the same.

"Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying: A voice in Rama was heard, lamentation and great mourning; Rachel bewailing her children, and would not be comforted, for they are not."  Matthew 2: 16-18.

The prophet, Jeremiah, was a "youth" himself, asked by the Lord to witness to His Truth. It was into his mouth the Lord literally put His words (Jeremiah 1: 4-10). It was to Jeremiah that the Lord revealed His providence and omniscience: "Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you." How chilling it is that this young prophet would reveal the horror of the slaying of the Holy Innocents. And yet, how perfectly fitting it is that he would be one to reveal the Lord's promise of hope in this darkness:

"Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you."

Oh, you darling babies. You beautiful, innocent children. May your lives be witnesses to the gift of life which is so much taken for granted here on earth. May your eternal lives comfort the hearts of your parents and heal the wounds against life in our society. May you, along with our massacred unborn, and all the saints in heaven help us to repair those wounds for the sake of His sorrowful passion. Holy Innocents, who died for the life of the infant Jesus, pray for us. Lord, have mercy upon us.

I highly recommend this article by Dr. Gerard M. Nadal.


  1. It is hard to know that all I can do is pray for these families, I'd like to do more. It is very sad.

  2. I know, Kat. I just feel like there are no right words for the horror of this. On the other hand, I strongly feel it is better to say something, rather than nothing. Let our words be prayers to the only balm for this wound.


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