This seems like one of those days when there’s really nothing else to say. In the wake of the carnage at Newtown, everything out there seems so temporal, so trivial.
So if you read nothing else today, read this: Charlotte. Daniel. Olivia. Josephine. Ana. Dylan. Madeleine. Catherine. Chase. Jesse. James. Grace. Emilie. Jack. Noah. Caroline. Jessica. Benjamin. Avielle. Allison.
Those are the 20 children gunned down in a senseless act of madness. President Obama recalled them Sunday night in a visit to the grief-stricken town:
“God has called them all home. For those of us who remain, let us find the strength to carry on, and make our country worthy of their memory.”
WaPo profiles Monsignor Robert Weiss, pastor of Newtown’s St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, where 10 of the 20 children killed were parishioners. St. Rose was evacuated during Sunday Mass over a bomb threat that turned out to be nothing.
Six-year-old Noah Posner will be the first Newtown victim laid to rest, this afternoon. The NYT recounts Rabbi Shaul Praver’s visit to the funeral home with Noah’s mother.
The Rev. Kathleen Adams-Sheperd of Newtown’s Trinity Episcopal Church will guide her parish in burying parishioner Benjamin Wheeler, 6. From CNN: “Was God absent from our world?” she asked Sunday. “Indeed not. Have we been shaken? Yes. Have we seen hope? Yes, yes, yes.”
The new dean of Washington National Cathedral says enough is enough: “I believe the gun lobby is no match for the cross lobby,” says the Very Rev. Gary Hall.
And then there’s this, from former presidential candidate (and Southern Baptist pastor) Mike Huckabee:
“We ask why there’s violence in our school but we’ve systematically removed God from our schools,” Huckabee said on Fox News. “Should we be so surprised that schools have become such a place of carnage? Because we’ve made it a place where we don’t want to talk about eternity, life, what responsibility means, accountability.”
Meanwhile, in other news …
A 20+-year volunteer with Catholic youth is suing the Diocese of Forth Worth for defamation after he was told he could not longer volunteer after alleged “boundary violations.”
A Muslim cabbie in St. Louis is suing over rules that won’t let him wear his religious garb behind the wheel.
More whacky news from Florida (and I can say that because I used to live there): a 30-year-old black woman who was pulled over claims she’s been “kidnapped” by police because she’s a “grand sheikess” in the Moorish Temple of Science of the World. Which, in her mind, means that she and other black people are not subject to the laws of the land.
White House Chief of Staff Jacob Lew, an Orthodox Jew, told an audience at Yeshiva University that allegations of sexual abuse of minors at the flagship Jewish school are “despicable.”
The World Council of Churches says the U.S. economic embargo of Cuba is preventing the Latin American Council of Churches from meeting in Havana after a Miami bank blocked a wire transfer to cover lodging and food costs for attendees.
British Jews are concerned that education officials have reportedly nixed Hebrew from the list of seven languages that schools can teach to children.