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Pray Last

Sunday’s tragedy in Las Vegas has us all shaking our heads in sorrow as we ask “why?” and wonder what we can do about it. We can’t easily answer the ‘why’ question because what happened was evil and evil is not on speaking terms with rationality. It is evil precisely because it can’t be explained. Evil is what put Jesus on the cross Good Friday.

There are, however, some answers about what we can do. Pray, yes. But prayer without action is empty. So, I would ask you to pray only after you have done these things:

  1. Write your representatives to advocate for sensible gun control. In particular, please write against the NRA proposed “Hearing Protection” bill which would loosen restrictions on gun silencers. The death toll in Las Vegas would have been much higher if people hadn’t heard the shots. Here are links to your representatives:

  2. Make a Go Fund Me contribution to the victims and their families. Here is a link:

  3. Be normal. The world needs to see what normal looks like and we are in a position to model that. We can love by words and deeds. A summary of St. Francis’ teaching says, “Preach the gospel always. Sometimes use words.”

  4. Do not accept the new normal. So many things have happened recently to bend the arc of the moral universeaway from justice. Lately, they have been coming so rapid fire that they tend to weigh us down and discourage us. The temptation is just to give in and accept all this as the new normal. Don’t do that. Remember what normal looks like.

  5. Finally – pray. Pray first for the victims of the tragedy and their families. Pray for the ongoing tragedy of gun violence in our nation and for a sane solution. Pray for us as we come to terms, once again, with evil which cannot be explained. Pray – but pray last.

Pastor Carl

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