Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are the victims of the Covenant School shooting in Nashville, for they are with God.

Blessed are the Covenant School staff members, the traumatized, the wounded, for these shall be called Children of God.

Blessed are the three 9-year-olds, Hallie Scruggs, Evelyn Dieckhaus, and William Kinney, whose innocent bodies were demoralized in a senseless act of murder, for they are seated on the lap of the Almighty. Blessed are Cynthia Peak (61), Mike Hill (61), and Katherine Koonce (60), for their lives were beautiful.

Blessed are their loved ones, with broken hearts, with battered minds. Blessed are all Nashvillians who weep.

Blessed are the shell-shocked. Blessed are the confused. Blessed are the pissed-off. Blessed are the traumatized. Blessed are the people who blame themselves, even though it’s not their fault. Blessed are the bystanders.

Blessed are the men and women in Nashville who can think of no other way to respond to this erratic tragedy than to help others.

Blessed are the total strangers who have shown up on the scene just to cry. Blessed are those gathered outside Covenant School to hold candles, present bouquets, and memorialize the lost ones.

Blessed are the local media persons whose job is to stand in front of cameras and report, matter-of-factly, on the worst crime of humanity.

Blessed are all those with big hearts, who just want to help. Blessed are the givers. The doers. The feeders. The bakers. The babysitters. The shuttle drivers. In a world of people blinded by their own anger, bless you. A million times, bless you. You are not invisible.

Blessed are those who painstakingly try to maintain peace, especially while everyone else in this world is fighting like rabid canines. As politicians hold public urination contests, and random people on Facebook fight from 3,000 miles away. Blessed are the peacemakers.

Blessed are you, the immediate family members of the victims, whose lives are falling apart, whose homes will be empty.

Blessed are the mamas and daddies of the dead.

Blessed are the husbands and wives of the deceased.

Blessed are the sons and daughters of the fallen. The brothers and sisters. The aunts and uncles. The grandparents. The grandchildren. The best friends. The fishing buddies. The classmates.

Your suffering makes no sense right now, and maybe it never will. You have every right to cuss at God and shake your fist at the sky. But know this: Already your strength and your courage are affecting millions. And that’s not nothing.

Blessed are the parents of Audrey Hale, whose 28-year-old child lost her mind; whose daughter committed blackblooded murder. We are praying for these parents.

Blessed are the EMTs, the fire-medics, the patrolmen, the patrolwomen, the throngs of Metropolitan Nashville Police officers, the spokespersons, the medical examiners, the coroner, the medical workers, the liaisons, the deputies, the office workers. You are the salt of the earth.

Blessed are the students of Covenant School. Blessed are the little boys and little girls with blood smattered on their clothes. Blessed are the innocent children who don’t know what’s happening right now. You are the light of the world, kids. And believe me, we all see your beautiful lights shining.

And blessed are you. Whoever you are. Whoever is reading this. You’re blind with sadness. You’re dispirited. You’re overwhelmed. You are mourning.

I wish I knew what to say, but I don’t. Because I’m nobody. So I stole these words from someone else:

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”


  1. W. Larry Evans - March 29, 2023 8:58 am

    Blessed are we who have you, Sean, to take us the perfect ONE for for solace when nothing makes sense. We thank God for you.

  2. Gigi22 - March 29, 2023 11:41 am


  3. David in California - March 29, 2023 12:37 pm

    Well said, Sean 🙏

  4. julieannhall - March 29, 2023 12:41 pm

    And may God bless YOU (and Jamie), Sean.

  5. Ron Brodwater - March 29, 2023 12:45 pm


  6. Dustin George - March 29, 2023 1:35 pm

    Thank you my friend.

  7. Mary Anne Zlittlr - March 29, 2023 2:13 pm

    So very well said, Sean. Bless you for you kind and comforting words in the face of yet another heartbreaking moment in our nation.

  8. Kaye Starr - March 29, 2023 3:21 pm

    Very moving. Beautifully written as always. You knew what to say, sir.

  9. Paul Alge - March 29, 2023 6:48 pm

    It’s legal in Tennessee and most other states to own and walk around with assault weapons. This is the consequences of such careless and dangerous political fueled policies. And we don’t want thoughts and prayers we want intelligent reform. ❤️☮️

  10. nonniandbobo - March 29, 2023 8:55 pm

    Heartbroken over this… Angry over this happening again… Thankful for your thoughtful and comforting prayer.

  11. Ramon Presson - March 29, 2023 10:38 pm

    I live and work in the Nashville area. Prior to Monday I thought of Nashville as a large city. It seems much smaller this week, as so many people have/had a direct or indirect relationship with the victims and/or their families, or traumatized survivors. The ripple effect spreads far and wide. Tomorrow morning I’ll be counseling a shocked and grieving friend of a victim. A fellow therapist in our office counseled an elder from the church on Tuesday. The flags at half-staff everywhere are stark reminders that not only COULD it happen here, it now HAS happened here.
    Sean, even if I didn’t live here, I’d still say this is one of the most profound and moving pieces you have written. I’m sharing the link to your tribute and beatitudes with many. Thank you!

  12. Leanne Christensen - March 30, 2023 12:34 am

    Thankful for your thoughtful, heartfelt words and comforting prayer.

  13. Suzan Martin - March 30, 2023 10:14 pm

    What a unifying offering of peace! Thank you for sharing your God given gift with those who have been gifted by you. May the peace without understanding embrace you, Sir 🙏


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