The shootings in Colorado and in the Sikh Temple are so absolutely horrendous it is hard to even talk about them. My heart is broken for the parents who lost sons and daughters in these senseless acts. Because of one man's horrible actions, dozens of families and friends have lost loved ones.
How can anyone justify the loss of innocent lives when folks are just going out for a night at the movies or to their own temple for a religious service? A person who can take lives as though they mean nothing is clearly insane and evil. Heated discussions on gun control have certainly ensued after these events.
I go back to what a friend, who just happened to be a policeman, always said: "Guns don't kill people. People kill people." That, I believe is the bottom line. I don't know what the answer is in terms of gun control. We need to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, but how do we do that, exactly? What about hunters? How about our right to bear arms? These questions absolutely overwhelm me as a Christian.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches:
"God created man a rational being, conferring on him the dignity of a person who can initiate and control his own actions. God willed that man should be ‘left in the hand of his own counsel,’ so that he might of his own accord seek his Creator and freely attain his full and blessed perfection by cleaving to him. Man is rational and therefore like God; he is created with free will and is master over his acts."
"As long as freedom has not bound itself definitively to its ultimate good which is God, there is the possibility of choosing between good and evil, and thus of growing in perfection or of failing and sinning. This freedom characterizes properly human acts. It is the basis of praise or blame, merit or reproach. The more one does what is good, the freer one becomes. There is no true freedom except in the service of what is good and just. The choice to disobey and do evil is an abuse of freedom and leads to “the slavery of sin.”
I pray for an end to all violence, and for the sanctity of all life. Lord, hear our prayer.