“When we forgive someone, it allows us to release so much anger and pain,” Lancaster acknowledged in a Contra Costa Times newspaper story May 29. “It’s not for us to judge what makes some people do what they do.”
“The world has so much hatred and violence that sometimes people take death lightly, especially young people,” Lancaster told the Times.
“Forgiving him was the least I could do. We all have to work with what we have. I think that’s what is intended for us.”
Sally Lancaster has shared the story of her faith around her son Troy’s murder with St. Philip Neri Parish on several occasions, including this past Good Friday. Here are some excerpts from her talk:
“After my son Troy passed away, I could address our Blessed Mother with the same words as Christ spoke from the cross, ‘Mother, behold thy son.’
“As I reflect and wonder what kind of mother I might have been to Troy, I am both relieved and saddened. Sometimes I got it right, I would think. Yet I look back at the times I could have handled the situation better. We mothers probably all could improve to some degree when it comes to nurturing our children.
“When I think of Troy as a baby, just a few months old, napping upstairs at home, I remember the 1989 earthquake shaking our house. Everyone who could do so ran outside. I ran, too. I went back to get Troy, but I could not make it up the 17 stairs to the room where Troy was napping because the walls and stairs were shaking so much. I had to wait and hope that God would keep him safe for me and take care of him, while I waited with my other six children. When the house stopped shaking, I ran to him. Did I do the right thing?
“The earth also quaked at the time of the crucifixion. There was Mary, staying with her son, no matter what. If she was fearful, one would not know it. She stayed with her son because that’s what a mother does. So, when there are times where we cannot or will not be with our sons when we would want to be, we can always call on Mary and entrust our children to her tender care to watch over them.
“Even when my son may possibly be suffering in Purgatory, his Blessed Mother can offer her tender words to him, ‘There, there, my son, it will all be over soon. Then you can enjoy peace with my Beloved Son, forever in the heavenly Kingdom God made for us all.’
“My prayer now is, ‘Please, Blessed Mother, behold my son.’”