Tragic Deja Vu

It is with great sadness that I provide a link to my 4/16/07 post that followed the Virginia Tech shootings. In that post, I offered some strategies for helping children to cope with disaster. In light of the shootings at Northern Illinois University yesterday, I’m aware of the fact that some of us catechists may find ourselves in a situation where it would be prudent for us to speak about the incident.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the Northern Illinois University community and to the families of all who have been affected by this enormous tragedy.

I offer a few thoughts from a book by Fr. Richard Hauser, S.J., titled Finding God in Troubled Times:

Where is our God in suffering? We Christians do not have a fully satisfying explanation for why the world contains so much suffering. But we have something better: we have the power to deal with the suffering. We know where our God is during suffering. Our God is with us – in all the senseless accidents and ruptured relationships and interior brokenness of our lives. And we cannot claim to be living a fully Christian life until we believe and live this dimension of the gospel, trusting God’s presence and power working through our own “thorns in the flesh,” Gethsemanes, and Calvarys.

Click here to watch an interview with Fr. Hauser about the topic of finding God in troubled times.

About Joe Paprocki 2739 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, where, in addition to his traveling/speaking responsibilities, he works on the development team for faith formation curriculum resources including Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts and God’s Gift: Reconciliation and Eucharist. Joe has more than 35 years of experience in ministry and has presented keynotes, presentations, and workshops in more than 100 dioceses in North America. Joe is a frequent presenter at national conferences including the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, the Mid-Atlantic Congress, and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He is the author of numerous books, including the best seller The Catechist’s Toolbox, A Church on the Move, Under the Influence of Jesus, and Called to Be Catholic—a bilingual, foundational supplemental program that helps young people know their faith and grow in their relationship with God. Joe is also the series editor for the Effective Catechetical Leader and blogs about his experiences in faith formation at

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