Another traumatic event in our nation, and once again we are faced with how to heal, how restore civility and how to grow as a society. Gun control, mental illness, violence objectified in our media and used as a source of entertainment, all of these are topics The word trauma comes from a Greek word which means a “wound.” It is most commonly defined as the feelings aroused from witnessing or experiencing events that bring about actual or threatened death or serious injury or threat to physical and bodily integrity, either to oneself or to others. Traumatic events often leave one feeling overwhelmed and stuck, disrupting our intimacy with God and our connection to community. Many years ago I heard a woman who was speaking on healing from trauma and abuse, say, “I’ve always believed in God, but for years I never liked him. In my mind God stood in the doorway of our living room just watching as my father beat me. So when I grew up I shoved God away.” Trauma affects core beliefs about God, ourselves and others.
We believe in God who truly “heals the brokenhearted” (Psalm 147:3), and calls us to be instruments of healing, for ourselves and for others. “Wounded healers” are oftentimes the best tools in God’s loving hands and while there isn’t one simple answer to dealing with life’s trauma, especially in a society as complex as ours; I would like to suggest just a few very basic steps for individual healing and bring healing to others that God can use to bring healing and reconciliation:
Acknowledge the reality of pain and loss. Be honest by moving beyond victimhood. Tell your story. After you tell your story, invite God to come into your story. Build a healing church. Let your gratitude for the healing you’ve experienced in your own life motivate you to help other people who have gone through trauma.
Transitioning to a more practical note, remember this evening at 7:00 pm in the Church is the prayer service for Our Lady of the Rosary. At this time we will as a parish participate in consecrating the Archdiocese of Denver to our Lady of Fatima and the rosary on the 100th anniversary of the Fatima apparitions.
And of course this Saturday is OKTOBERFEST. See you all at these parish events!
God bless, Father Wes, OP