Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Fr Dwight Longenecker

4/18/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The fact of the matter is that God is in the middle of all the emotions-in the middle of the mess with us.

Where is God in the midst of the horror?  Just where he always is, in the midst of the mess. He's there suffering with the victims, bearing the horror with us and weeping with those who mourn and raging with those who rage.

Highlights

By Fr Dwight Longenecker

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/18/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Sandy Hook, Boston, Boston marathon, Boston bombing, Fr Dwight Longenecker


GRRENVILLE, SC (Catholic Online) - After Sandy Hook our nation faces the bomb blasts of Boston. In the midst of a beautiful Spring day when crowds are gathered to celebrate a community sporting event the day is shattered by tragedy.

Where is God in the midst of the horror?  Just where he always is, in the midst of the mess. He's there suffering with the victims, bearing the horror with us and weeping with those who mourn and raging with those who rage.

Do you feel righteous rage at the insanity and senselessness of this evil? So does God. Now you understand what God's wrath is like. God's anger is not arbitrary or petty. He is angry when something beautiful is broken and when something innocent is devoured by evil.

Do you feel helpless sorrow, pity and nameless frustration in the face of such terror? So does God. Now you understand his frustration and anger at humanity's inhumanity.

Do you feel compassion and heartache, and don't you want to do something for the people who are hurting-do just anything you can? So does God. Now you know how much he longs to come in to our lives and help us and do something for us to heal and reconcile and make things right.

Don't you feel rage and frustration and confusion and fear for the deranged and sick person who planned and perpetrated the outrage? Don't you ask what made him do such a thing? What turned the nameless bomber into a murderous monster?

The fact of the matter is that God is in the middle of all the emotions-in the middle of the mess with us.

Why doesn't he step in and stop the evil? Because he's God and he created our race with free will. He allows us to do what we will. He does not impose his will on us-even when he sees what horrors we have planned.

He did not deliver his own son from torture and death, but instead brought out of that darkness a new light for mankind. That's how he handles it. He works endlessly and eternally to bring good out of evil, to bring light out of darkness, to bring life out of death and hope out of despair.

This creative work of his is something he calls us to share in. We co-operate with this creative work of reconcilation. He has given us the ministry of reconciliation-to somehow fashion out of the horror-hope-to somehow keep on struggling against all odds to overcome the tsunami of evil that threatens to sweep over.

Where did the evil come from in the first place? You can't blame it on religion. For every deranged and twisted religious maniac there  are a thousand sincere, good and moral religious people.

You can't blame it on politics. There are plenty of people who use politics to help heal the world and mend our broken society.

All we can do is admit that someone somewhere is very broken and twisted, wounded and full of rage. Furthermore, we must also admit that our whole society is broken. Our world is broken.

Our world is locked in a cycle of selfishness, greed, lust and violence. What I'm getting at is this: our Western society is sick-sick through and through with an insidious cancer. Just beneath the smiling surface of America there is a cancer of sin, and the symptom of this sickness is violence. Beneath our smiling success is a history of war, violence and greed.

I am just as horrified as the next person at the senseless bombing in Boston, and I truly hope I am wrong, but I predict more of the same. This bombing came out of some dark place in our world and our American society shares in this darkness just like the rest of the world.

The dark wound is deep down in our culture, and it will continue to poke out it's monstrous head and ravage our land whenever it gets the chance. This violence and the other recent violence has burst forth from our whole collective human race.

Even if he is a foreigner, the person who planned the bomb is our son. He is our offspring. We produced him. Beneath the surface, our society is deeply unhealthy, and unless something is done to correct that sickness, the cycle of violence will continue.

-----

Fr Dwight Longenecker is the pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church in Greenville, South Carolina. Browse his books, connect with his blog and be in touch at dwightlongenecker.com

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More U.S.

How far will it spread? A New York doctor has tested positive for Ebola Watch

Image of 33-year-old Craig Spencer, a member of Doctors Without Borders, had recently returned to the U.S. after treating Ebola patients in Guinea.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A New York doctor who had recently returned from Guinea has tested positive for Ebola, the fourth person diagnosed with the disease in the United States. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Craig Spencer worked for Doctors Without Borders where he was treating ... continue reading


Same-sex couples line up to be wed in Wyoming Watch

Image of After the state formally dropped its defense of a law defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman, Jennifer Mumaugh says that attitudes across the state have shifted in recent years to be more open to gay couples.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Same-sex couples began lining up around the block in Wyoming for marriage licenses this week. U.S. District Judge Scott W. Skavdahl, appointed by President Barack Obama struck down the state's gay marriage ban last week. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Will they riot after this? Autopsy, analysis shows officer Wilson was telling the truth Watch

Image of New analysis and witness reports suggest that officer Darren Wilson was being attacked by Michael Brown and shot him in self defense.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

New evidence from Ferguson Missouri seems to vindicate the testimony of officer Darren Wilson, showing that the fatal shooting of Michael Brown may not be as cut and dry as many of the protestors in the area believe. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to ... continue reading


Is this a sign of things to come? 2014 midterm most expensive on record Watch

Image of Early voting has already started in several states including Kansas and Illinois.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Well underway, the 2014 midterms are set to be the most expensive midterms ever, according to projections that the Center for Responsive Politics released on October 22. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - While heavily overshadowed by global affairs like the ... continue reading


ACTIVE SHOOTER - Kids, teachers, community terrorized by admin, police at Thompson Jr. HS in Bakersfield in the name of safety? Watch

Image of Terrorization in the name of safety is still terror.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The latest school shooting did not make the national news yesterday because allegedly it was an act of domestic terrorism perpetrated against kids and a working-class community in the name of safety. For about 30 minutes on Tuesday, students, faculty, and their parents ... continue reading


Guns Do Not Have Rights, People Do. Legitimate Self Defense is One of Them

Image of Guns have no rights, only people do.Yes, one of them is the Right to Self Defense - and the Right to defend your neighbor. You may ask,

By Keith A. Fournier

We live in a precarious time in the United States of America. Many of us are deeply concerned about the effort to infringe upon the fundamental rights which were delineated in the Bill of Rights to the United States Constitution. I have written extensively about ... continue reading


Catholic school forbids Hollywood lesbian drama from shooting on location Watch

Image of In the scene to be filmed at the school, Moore's character, a New Jersey police detective with terminal cancer, applies for a domestic partnership with her partner, played by Page in order to pass on her pension legally after her death.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While actresses Julianne Moore and Ellen Page are big names in filmland, their largesse didn't get them past the authorities at Salesian High School in New Rochelle, New York. The catholic school has declined their request to use their location for a ... continue reading


On the Feast of St. John Paul II, His Prophetic Warning to the U.S. Requires a Response Watch

Image of Deacon Keith Fournier standing under the beautiful bronze statue of John Paul II in Denver, Colorado.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

In an address given during that 1976 Eucharistic Congress in Philadelphia for the bicentennial celebration of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Cardinal Karol Wojtyla spoke some words which I believe were prophetic. - We are now standing in the face ... continue reading


Guest Commentary by Ken Blackwell: Houston's Mayor is Endangering Civil Rights

Image of Ken Blackwell

By Ken Blackwell

In Houston, Texas, we have seen a bizarre twist on traditional Civil Rights play out. The Mayor of Houston, Annise Parker, has been waging an uncivil war on people who oppose the far-reaching homosexual rights ordinance she powered through the City Council. That ... continue reading


Suspected Indiana serial killer foiled by text messages Watch

Image of Darren Deon Vann is suspected in the death of a woman in Hammond - and possibly six more in neighboring Gary, possibly even more.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Darren Deon Vann told Indiana Police he "messed up" and expressed surprise that he was found so quickly, in the biggest understatement in recent memory. Vann is suspected in the death of a woman in Hammond - and possibly six more in neighboring Gary, possibly ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 4:1-6
1 I, the prisoner in the Lord, urge you therefore to ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Psalm Of David] To Yahweh belong the earth and all ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:54-59
54 He said again to the crowds, 'When you see a cloud ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 24th, 2014 Image

St. Anthony Mary Claret
October 24: Claretian archbishop and founder. Anthony was born in Salient in ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter