Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Hallowed Evening

I turned on channel 10 news tonight to see the ETPRS report of the Bijou Theatre Hauntings. What I got instead was a report about a security officer getting shot in the parking lot of my old high school, on the same campus where my brother goes to school. The incident had happened about 15-20 minutes before the newscast, and the officer was en route to the hospital. He had gone to check out an out-of-state car in the parking lot and gotten in an altercation with a homeless man from Virginia. The man shot him in the back with a revolver. The officer happened not to be wearing his customary Kevlar vest tonight. The suspect left the scene and rammed a KPD cruiser just north of downtown. He was then apprehended and taken to St. Mary's hospital (the police had to taze him). The officer died just before reaching a different hospital, while I was watching the news story.

Jay Leno came on. His guests were Rosanne Barr, who blatantly stated that not enough people were getting divorced, Sharon Osbourne, who was very proud of her daughter for bringing home a different boy every day, and Marilyn Manson, who, poignantly, is always wearing a costume. I would have liked to hear an interview with him, but no such luck. He sang a song from The Nightmare Before Christmas and Conan came on and was funny.

The one thing I can remember in this unexpected, close-to-home piece of surreality, is the picture of the shooter being taken in cuffs from the hospital. He, with several officers, walked out the door in the background, and in the foreground, quite by accident, was a slightly out-of-focus statue of Mary looking up to heaven. We "ponder these things" in our hearts, and the end of the matter is still that somehow, God is sovereign. Perhaps it is even more pointedly revealed here: a homeless man with a car and a gun, from over 150 miles away, a security guard who didn't wear his vest tonight, a Hallowe'en when schools send security out at night to prevent vandalism, a God under whom no sparrow falls unnoticed or unbidden. I'm not sure how something could be so heavy with sorrow and joy at the same time, but it is.

Happy Hallowe'en, my alma mater. Soli Deo Gloria.


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