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By Peggy Weber

When my daughter, Kerry, was in First Grade she was worried about when she would lose her first tooth. Everyone else in the class, she said, had lost a tooth! It was true. She was slow to get them and even slower to lose them.

Happily in the spring of first grade the first one finally came out.

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In the meantime, she had learned how to perform a cartwheel and got to show that skill with some of her classmates at the annual Holy Cross Musical.

It is this kind of “stuff” that kids and parents should remember about First Grade – not what families in Newtown, Conn. are recalling. Children should worry about losing teeth not the trauma of a gunman killing their classmates.

As the events of Dec. 14th unfolded, I kept thinking that the slaughter of young students could not have happened. What kind of troubled person would do something like this? And why?

I have no answers.

But I have found comfort watching and listening to the prayerful responses to such a horrific event. And I was especially inspired when watching Monsignor Robert Weiss, pastor of  St. Rose of  Lima Catholic Church in Newtown.

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He has made me proud to be Catholic. It has been wonderful to see what a caring and kind pastor he is during such an awful time. There are no classes in the seminary on how to handle something like this. He has been a brick. And his parish has responded in so many beautiful ways — including the planning of  special Mass the night of the shooting.

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I checked out the parish web site. Indeed, they have an impressive and active community.

On the site, they have been posting comments from people to the parish.

One was quite poignant. It was from Monsignor Basil O’Sullivan, an Irish priest living in Scotland. He sent condolences from the Dunblane, Scotland where a horrific shooting took the lives of many small children in March, 1996.

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The following link is their sympathetic message.

http://www.strosechurch.com/from-scotland/

It made me realize that there evil persists. But it also showed me how good people can be during terrible times.

It is to that I cling.

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