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Parker Palmer's Message: "keep heartbreak and memory alive, and the motivation that comes from them."

Parker Palmer's Message

Here is a list of children and adults who were killed on Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. It's heartbreaking to read their names and see their ages...

That's exactly why we must return to this list time and again. If we hold these children, their teachers, and their families in our broken-open hearts, we are less likely to forget. As Elie Wiesel said, “To forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.”

There is no single cure for the deadly violence that infects American culture, and yet we must never stop trying to take remedial measures. We live in a democracy, and we will disagree on what those measures should be. But we are more likely to keep working on the problem—and reach consensus on some solutions—if we keep heartbreak and memory alive, and the motivation that comes from them.

In memory of the children who died—and of the adults who were devoted to caring for them—I'm posting the poem "Shoulders" by Naomi Shihab Nye.

The poem speaks for itself. I would only add this: adults who care more about their political ideologies than about our children—everybody's children—are a danger to all of us. But tens of millions of adults in this country put the children first. For us, Friday's tragedy is yet another call to find any way we can to translate our care into action for the sake of the common good.

In the long run, if we want to honor the dead, the only memorial that matters is a nation and a world in which everyone's children are safe and have a chance to thrive because the grown-ups cared, never forgot, and never stopped caring...

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(c) Rabbi Menachem Creditorfor Landingham & Kaepernick, our angels in the wings
Sometimes, it isn't about nuance.
Sometimes it just comes down to facing the storm,
calling God out,
standing at the center of a whirlwind
holding your ground.

No cathedral is immune to agony,
no soul impervious to life itself no nation purely noble.
If it were any other way,
there would be no need for cathedrals
in the first place.

Kneel,  stand,  sit,  rise up.

To kneel is
to submit  to lower oneself  to step down  to pause.
To kneel is to call attention  to touch the Earth's face to listen to those  whose blood saturates  the very roots of our story.
To kneel is to step aside  to step outside  to invite others to come closer  to remember.
To kneel is not to stand not to stand not to stand idly by.
Speak your truth,
God damn it.

That's what God wants most of all.

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