This is the last home game of the 2011 football season at Notre Dame. I took a stroll through the campus and soaked in the tranquil beauty of the autumn afternoon. While we have lots of historical landmarks that are well known and visited by many each weekend, I needed the road less traveled, the contemplative side of the University. Even our wonderful Grotto was already filled with pilgrims lighting candles and offering prayers. With some of our boys injured and unsure of their futures, I needed time alone to pray, dry my tears and come back to peace. It was espeicially hard this week given the terrible tragedy involving the Penn State football program. Those broken little boys with grief filled eyes haunt me and I have not even seen an actual photo. But they are there, in their silence, breaking my heart and causing tears to well in pain and confusion.
Our Blessed Lady of the Lake
Look down on all of your young warriors this weekend
from each and every University.
Protect them with your Grace,
guide their actions on and off the field of battle.
Heal their young hearts
as we move through these dark days tainted with grief.
as you gather all the innocent victims of child abuse
to your womb,
grant them and their families
the Divine and ever healing love
of your Son
now and always.