Terrorist attacks won’t kill faith of Christians

Published 8:52 pm Tuesday, April 23, 2019

“Thus saith the Lord: A voice was heard on high of lamentation, of mourning, and weeping, of Rachel weeping for her children, and refusing to be comforted for them, because they are not. “

Jeremiah 31:15

As of press time, the multiple reports on the deadly terrorist attack in Sri-Lanka have the total deaths numbering close to 300. Bombs rippled throughout parts of the city tearing apart homes, hotels and churches. Numbered among the dead were many Christians — ravaged and torn to pieces by acts of cowardice while observing the solemnity and the joy the Easter holiday.

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It did not take long for the authorities to have several suspects in custody. Suspects, that according to several news reports, were radical religious extremists. The extremists, radical Islamic extremists are not shy about taking responsibility. They also have not limited their attacks to Sri-Lanka as a baby dedication ceremony in Nigeria was attacked as well. Seventeen Nigerian Protestants were gunned down by Muslim extremists, including the child’s mother.

All of this just a few days after the cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris almost completely burned and a man entered St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York with gas cans and lighters. These acts coincide with severe crackdowns in communist China where hundreds have been arrested, and Bibles and hymnbooks burned.

The suffering heaped upon the faithful on the most holy of days for Christians in the West would be enough to dishearten even the most faithful. And though we all feel the sadness of the loss of life, and the way those lives were taken, we also stand in awe of the martyrdom these Christians were able to endure. Christ said there would come a day where we were hated for His namesake, and this age is no different.

We will not let this act of evil and cowardice be an instrument of defeat as the savages who carried it out intend. No. We will endeavor and those Christians in Sri-Lanka will rebuild their sanctuaries. They will continue to evangelize, baptize, dispense the holy mysteries of the sacraments, and serve and love the Lord Jesus Christ. As much as these radicals want, their bombs and the death that rained down from them, will take lives but they will not destroy spirits. They will not kill faith. They will only make it grow.

The recent attack on a 5-year-old in Minneapolis’ “Mall of America” by a 24-year-old man has begun to rotate out of the news cycle. This somewhat baffles me for the gruesomeness, callousness and the pure unadulterated evil of the crime should be dominating the network and cable news cycles.

Other violent crimes where adults have targeted children of another race or ethnic group have garnered headlines and stories for weeks on end. One does wonder why in this case, but perhaps I am just misunderstanding the context and the dynamics of the particular incident. I guess we’ll find out in time. Meanwhile little Landen fights for his life.