“Active Shooter Training.” The Morris Area Clergy Council was being trained in how to deal with an “active shooter” in one of our houses of worship by a NJ Department of Homeland Security official on Tuesday of this week. The timing, less than a week after the Parkland, FL shooting, was eerie. But let’s face it, given our nation’s inability to pass effective common sense gun legislation, the odds were high that this training would happen in close proximity to a mass casualty shooting event. And it did.
I don’t like to think about a gunman in our church, bent on destruction. But for an hour this week, and pretty regularly if I’m honest, I was forced to consider it.
There’s a passage in Isaiah that often gets quoted out of context– “and a little child shall lead them” to refer to situations where children have a better way of doing things than adults. The rest of the passage is,
The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; and a little child shall lead them.
The passage refers to a day when harmony will be restored to the earth and all creation will live in peace. When I think of the madness we adults have brought on ourselves with our worship of the idol of weapons, and the growing witness of children, starting with the survivors of the Parkland, Florida shooting, to stand up and say, “never again!” it seems to me that children ARE, in fact, leading us to a time when creation will be restored to a time of harmony and peace. Adults may finally be able to see that our gun legislation needs a complete overhaul, thanks to the lead of children.
Some day our children and grandchildren will explain to THEIR children how there was a time when their parents actually attended trainings to deal with the possibility of gunmen interrupting worship services– that’s how crazy and misguided the world was, back in 2018.