“Are You Grieving in Heaven?”
by Sister Betty A. Harbison, SSS
(May 28-29, 2022)
Are you grieving in heaven,
Mothers, Grandmothers and Great-Grandmothers?
Are you grieving in heaven?
In Ramah was there a voice heard,
lamentation and weeping and great mourning,
Rachel weeping for her children
and would not be comforted,
because they are no more.1
This week in Texas, at Robb School (2022), nineteen elementary babies
slain by a teenage baby
slain by police,
who stood idly by during the assault
Then, there was Coleman High School (1970) in Arkansas and
49th Street Elementary School (1984) in California and
Oakland Elementary School (1988) in South Carolina and
Cleveland Elementary School (1989) in California and
Lindhurst High School (1992) in California and
Frontier Middle School (1996) in Washington and
Pearl High School (1997) in Mississippi and
Heath High School (1997) in Kentucky and
Thurston High School (1998) in Oregon and
Westside Middle School (1998) in Arkansas and
Colombine High School (1999) in Colorado and
Santana High School in California (2001) and
Red Lake Senior High School in Minnesota (2005) and
West Nickel Mines School in Pennsylvania (2006) and
Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut (2012) and
Marshall County High School (2018) in Kentucky and
Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School (2018) in Florida and
Santa Fe High School (2018) in Texas and
Oxford High School (2021) in Michigan and
the plethora of all those untrumpeted shots in and around
“economically disadvantaged and ‘at risk’ ’’ schools
(code for schools comprised dominantly of poor children of color)
and all those babies slain
Are you grieving in heaven?
Is that why all the clouds gather heavy and gray?
Is that the source of torrential flooding, flash flooding, heart flooding
—a deluge of tears conceived in the cosmos
Then, there is the onslaught of war - tribal, national, racial, political, medical, germicidal, agricultural, aqua-centric...
slaying our children in Africa and Haiti and Ukraine and Afghanistan and so many other “stans,”
and, especially, the Americas,
the United States of America
racists slaying my people
police slaying my people
politicos and power-mongers slaying the people
platoons of paid predators and
purveyors of lies slaying the people
the hurt hurting the hurt (and vulnerable)…burgeoning
children slaying other children and themselves
and their elders and their people
parents slaying children slaying parents, scattering potentialities to the wind
And how we assault all life, all elements, all creation—
the animals, the land, the waters, the atmosphere!
We clamor over machinations for moon, stars and planets,
whatever we can reach
in our mind’s and technological eye.
Are we as relentless as we are repentless?
Are You grieving, Most Holy of Holy,
in heaven, in earth, in us, in all creation?
Do we commit the unforgivable sin, blaspheming Your gifts
with our actions, speaking wordless volumes,
grieving You, Holy Spirit, Eternal Mother of All Existence?
Remember Your mercy and
Reinvigorate Your love
within and among us
so that we, Your children in the chrysalis2,
mirror You in renewing our face of the cosmos—
1Matthew 2:18, 21st Century King James Bible
2Elbert Hubbard, “We Are Gods in the Chrysalis.”
SSS pray constantly for an end
to the senseless suffering
caused by gun violence,
please join us.