Patriot's Day 2013

As the events in Boston were unfolding last Monday, my daughter Rebecca called me from Des Moines where she lives with her husband Andy. "Mom, there has been an explosion at the Boston Marathon."

I immediately called my daughter, Kellyann, and asked if she had informed her twin sister, Dianne, who is studying abroad in Italy. Kellyann said she was skyping Dianne and Di was very upset. My plan was to contact Dianne via skype as soon as I arrived home. Now I realized just how frantic she was. She is a junior at Boston College and she was desparately trying to reach her friends who would be jogging along with the runners on the final three miles of their run. Those miles covered a run up 'heartbreak hill' which skirted the edge of the Chestnut Hill campus. She was near hysterics when I was finally able to reach her. She was talking with me and attempting to tweet and text her friends. Her anguish was almost inconsolable. She was trying to watch our TV which was glued to CNN. She asked me to turn my camera towards my TV so she could hear and watch CNN, but that was too distressing for her. Suddenly, I knew we had to pray. Through her sobs, she prayed with me. I in Ohio and Di in Italy, across those thousands of miles we prayed for God to send his legions of angels to surround Boston College to keep all harm away from the campus. We prayed for angels led by St. Michael to surround the city of Boston to protect the city from further harm, to guard the city of Boston, to protect all the people. Dianne and I felt a small bit of calmness flow into our hearts when we placed this horrific crime in God's hands. With angels protecting the city and the people, we knew that God would prevail.

That was Patriots Day. Now, as I share this story, 7 days later, I ache for all the people. So many sad stories, so much loss, so many unanswered questions, so much sadness and pain.

Praise be to God for sending so many courageous men and women to descend on the city just like a 'legion of angels', to defend and protect the people from further harm. Please heavenly Father be with each person as they recover from their injuries. Send your most Holy Spirit to comfort and console them. Give them the gifts of courage and perseverance and fortitude as they begin to put back the pieces of their lives, changed from the events of that awful day.

As I ponder all that has occurred, I think back to a sunny Patriot's Day four years ago. Andy worked that year at a running store in Boston, Marathon Sports, and Andy was running in the Boston Marathon. Rebecca sat in the chairs directly in front of that store waiting for a glimpse of her future husband. That place, where Rebecca sat is the place we all saw over and over and over again on the news. Those chairs, those metal barricades, those flags were directly in front of Marathon Sports, set up for their friends and loved ones to cheer the Marathon Sports employees across the finish line.


May God always have his hand in all that we do. God please always be close to us all.