Boston breathed a sigh of relief on Friday evening as the second of two suspects in last week’s Boston Marathon bombing attack was apprehended by police. The arrest came after a long day of coordinated efforts that shut down large portions of the city as residents followed “shelter in place” instructions from officials. The suspect, 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, is being treated at the hospital and will soon face questioning and legal proceedings.
“From fear to hope,” written just after the bombings, takes a closer look at how we can approach “mortal mind,” which the author describes as “that state of thought that harbors the mental tyranny of fear and tries to conquer by intimidation.” As we pray to recognize more of the Christ, God’s message to humanity, we’ll see how it destroys evil intentions, affirms innocence, and awakens courage in fearful hearts.
Meanwhile, residents have returned to West, Texas, where a fertilizer plant explosion last week killed 14 people, injured 200, and damaged many buildings. It’s still not clear what caused the fire that sparked the explosion, but investigators say they’ve found no evidence of criminal activity. Students returned to school on Monday, either in makeshift classrooms or in neighboring school districts, and residents were given the green light to reenter their homes. In “After the fire: how I prayed,” the author shares how he prayed for his family, and how he was able to help them rebuild, after their home was destroyed.
Boston held an interfaith “healing service” last Thursday, where religious and political leaders spoke about how we can find solace and comfort in the wake of crises like the bombing. “Healing our city” discusses that service, and provides a helpful starting point from our prayers as we seek to comfort others, rebuild buildings and lives, and regain what confidence we may have lost. God gives each of us the ability to “run with patience the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1), and our prayers recognizing His protection uplift everyone around us.
Finally, you’ll want to read “A place where terror is powerless,” which argues that terror — whether as a result of violent acts or of unpredictable disasters — can never tear us away from the love and protection that comes from God, divine Spirit. This kind of prayer does more than just comfort; it reminds us of the spiritual power that is here with us right now as we comfort one another. This power is at work in human consciousness, reminding each individual that honesty and goodness is their native state.