In the Stillness of the Night

In the Stillness of the Night

“Little children let us love, not in word of speech, but in truth and in action” I John 3:18

In the stillness of the night I hear many voices, and tonight I have heard the voice of  the Angel of Death as I learned of the death of Christian, thirty four. I have known Christian since he was 14. I remember meeting him first on the the corner of Polk and Sutter where he was “working”, and from the moment we met we became fast friends, we had the same first name.  I saw him grow from a cute kid into a harden drug user, in and out of treatment and jail,  but there was an innate sweetness about him. Christian struggled so hard. I remember distinctly when he was 19 coming up on him in Hemlock Alley late one night, he was preparing to shoot up, and he had just gotten out of treatment. I told him to be careful, for being in treatment without using for months and than shooting up after that long a period  you can over dose. He handed me the syringe and asked me if it was too much. I shot over half of it out, and he thanked me and he shot up with the remaining dosage. Christian was one of the guys who has taught me to live in the gray areas, life is not black and white.  You can judge the actions of others, or you can act in love towards them, and being  concerned about their  welfare. I am reminded often  that sin is “missing the mark,” that of not  loving our neighbor as ourselves–and so our actions must be in love,  not judgement–what is best for the welfare of the person at the time.  Christian died of liver failure.

And when I look the Angel of Death in the eye I hear the words of Paul:

“O death where is your victory? O death where is your sting? . . and the words of Jesus: “I am the Resurrection and the Life. . “

There is no fear, but hope! Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Fr. Christian River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


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