Faith & 21 Year Olds

ameI can’t get the people of Charleston, South Carolina out of my head.  I keep thinking of faith.  And I keep thinking of 21 year olds.

Nine souls filled with peace strived to give goodness to the world and gain strength on Wednesday night.  Faith dictated their choices.  They could have stayed home and watched TV.  A man likely heard their pleas, their reflections, their grappling, and he was ‘almost’ moved enough to not end their lives.

He is 21 years old, a time ripe with promise for some, with fear of what’s to come for others.  The world was his for the taking, for the good and for the bad.  Instead of taking on the world for the good, he took the worlds of others.

There are so many layers of community and faith, of optimism and sorrow, on mental health and parenting and intuition and how we treat others when we think they are ‘off’ or misguided.  I don’t have answers, just many many questions.  I could espouse moral platitudes about paying attention to those around you, about remaining faithful in darkness, about how our country CAN DO BETTER.  I’m not wise enough and none seem adequate to stand up to the sadness of this moment.

What light can you bring to the world, this Shabbat, in honor of Clementa, Sharonda, Cynthia, Tywanza, Susie, Myra and Ethel and Daniel and Depayne, nine people of faith?

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