What does one say to the idea–no, to the fact–of 50,000* dead in a moment? When one’s own biggest grief lately has been when to find the time to make holiday returns? Or how to squeeze in an extra half-hour of sleep in the morning? Or the fact that Starbucks has yet to install a drive-through along Route 9 to facilitate the morning commute?
I sicken myself. In my holiday “stress” (please), I hadn’t taken the time to stay abreast of world events. I was late to church Sunday morning, and caught the tail-end of my Pastor’s reminder that, as we closed our first portion of worship with prayer, we ought to pray for this situation in which “these thousands have died.” What thousands? I wondered. I assumed the calamity was Iraq-related. Another offensive. A rebel attack gone awry. Another mistake. “The greatest natural disaster of the millenium” hadn’t crossed my mind. I felt a slight pang of tragedy and prayed quickly and silently for people I didn’t know so as to get back to work preparing the bulletins… (more…)