Archive for assumption grotto detroit
A barely-acknowledged fact of modern life is the damaged and wounded women who have had an abortion. Many women don’t realize the magnitude of the decision they have made until much, much later, and once they do, they suffer from it for years.
On June 27, I had the privilege of attending an extraordinary and beautiful mass/ funeral for the aborted unborn, found in a Dumpster in the Detroit Metro area, in the City of Livonia. This mass was held at Assumption Grotto in Detroit, and was attended by Fr. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life.
Whether anyone else at the well-attended funeral knew it or not, there were women in attendance who, though not the mothers of those particular infants (as far as I know), were there to bury their aborted young ones along with these poor little ones, in spirit.
One of the women reported having serious repurcussions in the years since her abortion, serious anxiety and guilt problems, an inability to put that event to rest- not in her mind, not in her heart- not in her soul.
Having named her aborted child, along with all the other mourners, in a spirit of prayer and penitence, this lady offered to her Beloved Jesus the child, who through misinformation and difficulties, had sent that child to him an a much different way years earlier.
It was a beautiful and dignified send off for that little one, a beautiful resting place, a memorial, a sacred place where she could now lay him to rest. It was a restoration for her heart and soul, a chance to seek forgiveness, mercy and healing.
She was not the only one.
The magnitude of the fate of those little ones is enough to make anyone weep. We are all responsible to God for how our society treats ‘the least of these’ and cares for the ‘little ones.’
However, those little ones took with them to heaven healing, blessings and great love.
And they left some women in peace, in wholeness, in hope.
At a particular point in my life, I suffered a severe trauma- the only thing I could do was to weep. At my feet my little baby girl, almost a toddler, crawled up to me, patted me and said ‘oh, poor, oh, poor.’ Her look was so compassionate, so comforting, her concern was real, her attempt to make me feel better was everything her little heart could give. To this day, when I feel too injured by death or loss, if I can’t get comfort anywhere else I go back in time to that moment, and let that little peanut do her ‘bit.’ What a gift to me! I knew at that time that, if she so chose, she would be a HUGE gift to humanity and the woundedness we all share.
I was proud of her. That little bit, that tiny girl, STILL makes me proud.
Yesterday I took that little bitty with me in my heart to the very edge of eternity. We went together to offer to God, to mother earth, to the Eternal-beyond-time a very small box; a box filled with the pieces of the remains of TEN other little ones, in a casket about the size of a computer- the very definition of a ‘mass grave’.
It was Eternity, God, who gave me the special gift of my little comforter. It was Eternity, God, who had given me the gift of others who participated in my life, who left their mark on me, who I offered back to Eternity, God, at the end of their life.
Always we return people in much worse shape than when we got them. We give thanks for the life they led, we give thanks for their legacy, we hope that Einstein is right and their soul, their spirit, remains in eternity. They have lived their lives, enhanced and enriched the human experience, and taken all that with them to the other side.
Yesterday we were again offering back individuals that humanity had received as a gift, as the great potential to comfort others, to love, to participate in our human experience, to solve problems, to make use of their special gifts, to be someone’s soul mate, to leave a legacy (perhaps) of lives changed and transformed.
This time we offered those gifts back to Eternity having chopped them to pieces and thrown them in a dumpster before they ever took their first breath. Unless someone had dug those body pieces out of the dumpster, they wouldn’t have even had the dignity of a human funeral. They were nothing more than trash to their parents, to their doctors, to the janitor.
We returned them to Eternity along with the interior, unheard screams of their agonies as they were slowly, coldly, ruthlessly dismembered.
Standing at that edge of Eternity offering these special and gifted individuals, I experienced a profound SHAME in humankind, the humankind that I love, that I need, that I participate in our destiny together with.
Every human being on the planet has been touched by abortion, the numbers are so vast- 50 MILLION in the United States alone. In London there are 600 per day.
At the edge of Eternity, I offered all those in my own family and friends who have this, and the aborted, in their histories. Whether known or unknown to us, we all have them.
At the edge of Eternity, no matter how beautiful and dignified the burial the truth is that it was still a MASS GRAVE, akin to the mass graves of revolution, genocide, war; but this time its all about our own self-hatred, our own rejection of our humanity, the hardening our hearts to all that is tender, innocent, soft.
Imagine being the God of Eternity and ‘receiving back’ in this way, what He has given to us in love.
Imagine being the man who stomped his toddler to a horrible death, where the child was no longer even recognizable, meeting his Maker in the midst of that horrible act.
Witness Lisa Mota told the San Francisco Chronicle that Aguilar told people who tried to stop him that the boy was “trash.”
We, as a species, are no longer able to love, and we carelessly and brutally murder the only ones among us who haven’t yet lost that ability. There is no stretch from the unborn in pieces in the trash to a father intensely stomping to death his own son ‘because he’s trash.’
At THAT edge of eternity, my own little comforter only increased my shame for all of us, myself included, no matter how earnestly and lovingly she tried her comforting. A dreadful blend of pride and shame. My hope is that instead of trying to comfort me, she is able to go and comfort those who won’t make it as far as she did. They need her far more than even I do.