15 May 2013

Tragedy and community

This visit to Canada has been marked by a tragedy: Tim Bosma, a member of a Hamilton area Christian Reformed Church (CRC), went missing last Monday evening - the same evening I arrived in Toronto (and then later Hamilton). By Tuesday morning, his photo and a missing poster were plastered all over Facebook. At least a hundred of my friends - many of them CRC or living in Hamilton area - posted or reposted news of his being abducted by 2 men coming to test drive his truck. Somehow this person I had never met was frequently in my thoughts. Several times a day, the news would be read or watched in the hope that there was good news. I, along with hundreds of others, was praying that he would come home safe.

Today, a week after his disappearance, a press conference announced that Bosma's remains had been found. We all felt a collective sadness.

Yet, amidst this tragedy, there has also been a deep feeling of community. Facebook and twitter never let up passing on information and hoping that this might help. The news updates always included family and friends - and even relative strangers - reaching out to do all they could to help find this missing man. The missing poster was hung on posts in Chatham (200+ km away) and on the church door. Another was hanging in a park entrance in Woodstock. Prayers were said individually and in many churches last Sunday.

I hope and pray that we as a community continue to support the family as they mourn their loss and sort through this senseless tragedy.

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