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I wrote this lament on May 24, 2022, when 18-year-old Salvador Rolando Ramos fatally shot 19 students and two teachers, and wounded 17 other people at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

My family is connected to that community, and as I held the pain of conversations, memorials and deaths that should never be, I felt coherent thought fail me as my soul burned in the face of senseless tragedy. 

Now, I feel that same weight and pain as I witness the needless suffering of children in Palestine, Sudan, and The Congo: the children of the world who did not ask to be victims of violence. 

And yet, the images that continue to fill our feeds are images of lifeless bodies, much too small to be so still. 

How do we send our children out into a world that seems to not be protecting them?

How do we continue to have hope in the face of tragedies that seem to be ever-expanding in an increasingly pressurized and polarized global climate? 

Then and now, it feels like all I have is a cry of lament. A lament that simply asks,“Why?” 

A cry for all of our children. A cry for what should be.

A Lament for Our Children


Why the violence? Not even mindless…but mindful, self-aware, intentional violence. Against the weakest among us. The most vulnerable.

And for what?

For history? For nothing? For sin. For brokenness. Expanding the darkness.

Darkness, which knows it’s lost. Clawing in its final moments. Accomplishing the deadliest. Stealing, killing, destroying what it can on its way to oblivion.

Why, God?

So many.



Not breathing anymore.

Not running.

Not playing.

Not jumping or shouting.


You are sovereign.

You hear our cries.

You are strong in our weakness.

They were weak, Father. 

The weakest among us. 

What were their thoughts? Flying through their minds as bullets flew through the air. 

Where was your strength? Did you comfort them? Did you hold them in their last breath? As you ushered them into your presence much too soon…

I am weak, Father. I am weak to defend. I am powerless to protect.

Where are you?

I know you have them. I know you held them. I know you draw near to the brokenhearted, the left behind, the vulnerable, the weak.

But all I see are anniversaries. My nieces and nephews today. My brother tomorrow. Why is the question, “Who’s next?” on my breath?

I can’t take this. Like needles to my soul, I’m stuck under this burden. My brain is on fire. My soul cries out because I have no words left in me.

19 students. 2 teachers. 1 grandmother.

I need you. 

You tell us to seek you, but I am frozen. Broken.

I am weak. I am stuck. I am small.


You are strong.

You are good. All the time.

You are faithful.

Praise you, that great is thy faithfulness.


Reach your hand out to me. Bear me up. My knees are too weak to stand. My feet are too weary to carry me forward. Spirit, move in me.

What must you feel?

When your children kill each other.

Steal life.

Destroy families.

Stop this!

Please, Father.

You said the work is finished. You said the battle is won.

Stop them.

Your Kingdom, come.

Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Use us in our weakness.

Deliver us from evil.

For the Kingdom, the world, the battle is already yours.


Katie Nguyen Palomares is a Mixed Vietnamese/White activist, writer, and preacher currently living in Austin, TX. She serves as the Program Manager for Kingdom Capital Network, supporting primarily Black & Brown small business owners to make a Kingdom impact in their communities through their work. She also serves on the Digital Team for Chasing Justice and co-hosts The Beauty In-Between podcast with her husband. She earned her M.A. in Christian Leadership from Dallas Theological Seminary and her B.A. in English with teacher certification from Texas State University.

The views and opinions expressed on the Chasing Justice Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Chasing Justice. Any content provided by our bloggers or authors are of their opinion and are not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, club, organization, company, individual or anyone or anything.

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