by Thomas P. Bonacci, C.P.

The massacre of thirty-six people in Uthai Sawan, Thailand, last week is more than heart-breaking. The killings included slaughtering twenty-three children between the ages of three and five. The violence is unimaginable. People everywhere can feel their own hearts breaking at the magnitude of the destruction. 
We cannot help but think of the children who have lost their lives in the unjust war of Russian President Putin against Ukraine. His acts of violence target hospitals and children. The attacks against Iranians by their own government do not spare the lives of children. In the United States, some still deny the killing of children in Sandy Hook and other places. 
Our global communication abilities bring these events to our consciousness. Unfortunately, we have not yet learned to cope with the flow of such tragic information. Many are simply overwhelmed by the violence and cruelty. Some seek to limit their news consumption to preserve a sense of sanity and well-being. Yet, it is difficult not to be influenced by the tragic events touching our daily lives.   
The temptation to sedate the pain is strong and understandable. There is only so much pain and suffering a person can endure. Several suggestions come to mind in coping with the tragic events unfolding in our World and lives. First, share your feelings with people willing to share their feelings with you. We need to bond with one another in times of trouble. No one needs to be alone. Second, be inspired by the responses of people who come to the aid of those injured or grieving. Think of how generous and caring people can be amidst chaos and violence. Third, honor your feelings of grief, confusion, and heartbreak. Sometimes people think their feelings are a lack of faith when, in fact, they are signs of love, care, and concern. People ultimately strive to care for one another. We must never allow violence to have the last word. Nothing ever justifies the suffering so many endure, but their courage and example can transform and encourage us as we seek to create a more just and peaceful World.
Thank you, Holy Community, for allowing your hearts to be broken. So deep and generous is your love.            

As things begin to return to a new normal, we at The Interfaith Peace Project are here for you in any way that you need us. The Antioch Center is now open to fully vaccinated people on Wednesdays, from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. We are vigilant and will adjust to any and all recommendations from the state and county. We will continue our work through Zoom as we add in person programs. If you would like to schedule an in person or Zoom program or would like a phone appointment with any of us, give us a call. You may call or email Tom at:
Tom Bonacci
[email protected]
925-787- 9279