In his poem “Paradise,” Charles Preble writes: They say there are no tears / in paradise. If they are right / it is no place for me. If Charles is right, as poets often are, then Heaven is filled with the sound of weeping for the children of our world, victims of many kinds of violence—in a childcare center in Thailand, in a grade school in Texas, in a bombed-out home in Ukraine, in the streets of our towns and cities. But we have learned that not even all the tears of Heaven and Earth, no matter how sincere, can wash away the blood of children or the ravages of war. Let’s not throw up our hands in despair and defeat. Let’s pray for the wisdom and courage to act together, countering violence with nonviolent resistance to oppression and injustice and standing up to war with the possible dream of peace.
By Mara Faulkner, OSB