On Friday after school as we were travelling by taxi to the Homework Club, I mentioned to the driver about the tragedy unfolding in Christchurch. He said ‘I know, my friend’s cousin has just been killed.’ Suddenly an event that seemed reasonably close became a whole lot closer. The pictures of the victims in the news helps us move from knowing the statistics and the number killed, to knowing of individuals whose lives have been so horrendously cut short. Because of the actions of maybe only two or three people, the lives of so many will forever have a shadow of sadness over them. It is so unfair, but we know that acts of evil are invariably unfair. Innocent people sometimes suffer profoundly because of the actions of others.
Since Friday there has been an outpouring of grief for the victims and their families. Some lovely expressions of sympathy have come from a range of people, leaders, schools and faith communities. It does not change what has happened, but it does reaffirm that love and compassion are very powerful expressions of our humanity. We join with others in the international community and pray that peace and comfort would eventually come to the people of Christchurch, for whom the past eight years has seen two majors tragedies that have sadly brought immense grief to people much like ourselves.
This month’s edition of SchoolTV focusses on the tragic events in Christchurch, and offers strategies of how to talk to your children about it. You can access it here.
God’s grace to you and your families.
Senior School Chaplain