Singing, Grieving

Singing, Grieving — A guest post from Ellie Roscher

O Holy Night!O Holy Night

The stars are brightly shining

It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth.

Long lay the world in sin and error pining

Til he appeared and the soul felt his worth.

A thrill of hope a weary world rejoices

For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!

I love Christmas hymns. They are holy and hopeful. The music awakens my faith and fond memories of Christmas past. What is more joyful than Jesus coming to us as a little baby? This year, however, I have not been able to move past tears of sadness when hearing these songs. As we sing of the baby Jesus this Christmas, my mind and heart go to the twenty children and six adults killed in the school shooting in Connecticut. We are a weary world, and I’m just not ready to rejoice. I’m still sitting in the sadness of the loss of innocence and life.

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Let earth receive her King;

Let every heart prepare Him room,

And Heaven and nature sing,

And Heaven and nature sing,

And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

We read this week about Mary, the bearer of God and Elizabeth, whose baby leapt in her womb. I think of the parents of the twenty children, who are mourning in a way I can’t imagine right now. Are Heaven and nature singing? Or are Heaven and nature grieving with us?

Joyful, all ye nations rise

Join the triumph of the skies

With the angelic host proclaim:

“Christ is born in Bethlehem”

Hark! The herald angels sing

“Glory to the newborn King!”

What can we do but keep singing through the tears? There is more to do than cry and sing to address the brokenness in our world, true, but it is also okay to mourn when we need to. This school shooting has stopped me in my tracks. I can’t seem to shake it. I think there is a time and space to mourn the tragedy and to keep singing. We need the Christmas hope of Jesus more than ever right now.

Silent night, holy night

All is calm, all is bright

Round yon Virgin Mother and Child

Holy Infant so tender and mild

Sleep in heavenly peace

Sleep in heavenly peace

Photo courtesy of  Pixies and Pixels via Creative Commons License

Published by GoodGroundPress

Good Ground Press is the publishing ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. We publish resources for living the Gospel today, including Sunday By Sunday for adults and SPIRIT ONLINE for teens.

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