When I hear about another school shooting,
a shooting in a mall or a restaurant,
when I read about the kidnappings and torture of people in the Middle East, South America, and right here in the States,
when I see images of slaughter and genocide in Europe and Africa,
when accounts of suicide bombings and other random acts of violence appear on my computer screen,
when I am accosted by yet another tale of a woman and her children being murdered by someone who claims to love them,
when I am reminded of the horrors of current day child prostitution and 21st Century slavery,
when friends speak and write of watching family members and friends suffer untreatable pain, and, in one case, die of the flu,
sometimes all I can think to do is weep.
Yes, I pray. Often.
But still, I weep.
I put my pen down.
I put my book down.
I stop writing.
I stop reading.
And I weep.
Then I look up, pleading for peace, and say these familiar words again and again.
"Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy."