The small community of Newtown continues to get by Friday with the help of people all over who have pledged their support. One of those many good Samaritans is a pastor in Central Virginia, who went to Connecticut twice to comfort those dealing with loss.
As soon as he saw the news a year ago this weekend, he came up with the idea to get up and go. Pastor Michael Moore reached out to one of his deacons, who agreed to travel with him. The church supported the ministers financially so they could spread their mission to those who needed it most.
Little Charlotte Bacon is one of the 20 children killed during the Sandy Hook massacre.
"The Bible says life is but a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes, and I look at the eyes of Charlotte, and I recognize what a precious jewel she is…We're not guaranteed tomorrow so we have to live for today," said Moore.
It's a message of hope the pastor of Enon Baptist in Chesterfield took directly to Newtown exactly a year ago. Right after the shootings, he drove up with one of his deacons.
"He asked, 'How long will we be gone for?' I said, 'I don't know. I don't know... Until God sends us home.'"
He's glad they went. The ministers prayed for the victim's families. They also attended three funerals and snapped photos of memorials the town created as they grappled with the stark reality of what was happening.
"We saw two of the mothers who had lost children, and they were holding on to each other. They said, 'I know, I know we hurt. We hurt for everyone'… I realized they were holding up the whole town. In a sense they were holding up everyone that was grieving," he said.
After that initial visit last December, Pastor Moore went back months later preaching revival to a town still grieving but making progress.
"They don't want to be just remembered as Sandy Hook. This is what happened to us…they are a community that loves one another, unites with one another and has a strong faith, and they'll get through it with one another," Moore added.
It's a bond strengthened even in the unexplainable evil that struck a community at its core.
"Evil exists…The wonderful thing is, God says, 'In this life, you will have troubles, but take heart, I've overcome the world,'" he said.
Pastor Moore's relationships with the families in Newtown continue to grow. He's staying in touch with them and offering his continued support.
Click here to leave tributes to the victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy: http://on.fb.me/18qHF6A
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