Tuesday, September 6, 2011


"Maisy! Show Uncle Randy and Aunty Mary how you sing your ABC's!"

 Ronny's face beamed as his 2-year-old proudly recited the alphabet he had spent days teaching her. I watched him grab her and smother her little face with kisses, praising her for a job well done.

"Isn't she amazing!! She's only two!"

Laughing, I agreed, "Yep! You have a smart one on your hands! Good job, Maisy!"

This is my last good memory of Ronny and I cling tightly to it. If I let go of it... all I can see is his precious body tossed in the street like so much rubbish. And it hurts. Dear God, it hurts. I sit here with tears streaming down my face at man's inhumanity to his fellow man. This is not a fancy post. I am raw with grief and am not capable of posting anything sensible right now. These are simply my thoughts...tangled and unsorted.

"Why, Lord? Why couldn't you help him? He has 2 children, a brother, sister, father...why, Lord?! Jesus, it hurts so much."

No quiet gentle voice replies. Just silence.

"I gave him to you, Lord! I placed this man in your hands and saw you cradle him.  He was one of my 'special ones', one of my 'broken ones'. I trusted you.  How many times do I have to watch them lose their battles?"

More silence. I have no right to ask such questions. I know this but my heart refuses to be still.

"Are people only allowed a certain number of miracles, Lord? Is that it? Cause if it is, I'm way over quota."

Yes, I'm fresh sometimes. After all the Lord has given me I still strike out. I am "broken" too, you see. Not in the same manner...but "broken", nonetheless. How dare I presume to speak so to the Lord? It's a question I often ask myself.

"But I prayed and I prayed and I prayed! I would have gladly given up a few of my "miracles" for him!"
What an ungrateful wretch I am. I do not understand the Heart of God aside from the occasional glimpses he shares with me. The Lord stepped in time and time again for Ronny. A few years ago I wrote this about Ronny here on my blog:

"Our Lord's mercy is infinite and I am always left awestruck by this mercy. There is a man who lives in our city; I don't want to give his name so I will just call him R. My husband and I both know him. He is deeply depressed, a drug addict and suicidal. He went from being addicted to prescription drugs to heroin. The Lord has called me to deep intercessory prayer for R. This type of prayer is so powerful that it leaves me in tears. I placed R. in the hands of Jesus and Jesus cradled this broken man in His arms. I cried and cried.

R. has had six suicide attempts and all have failed. He has overdosed on pills twice and lived. He held a gun to his head, pulled the trigger and the gun misfired. He sliced his wrists and lived. He hung himself and this failed too! A couple months ago he jumped off a three story building and only got a broken rib. These are serious suicide attempts and all have failed. God hears our prayers and answers them, sometimes miraculously.

R. is homeless now but he is still alive. I ask those who read this to please pray for him."

I read this now and my heart is stilled a bit. I wonder how many people hang themselves and survive? How many guns fail to fire? How many people jump from third story buildings and only get a broken rib?

Ronny never did succeed in his "quick" suicide attempts. Heroin got him instead. After he died from an accidental overdose in a drug dealer's house they simply threw his dead body in the street like a piece of rubbish. They did not understand that this was a soul cherished by God.

 As I write this, a picture of Jesus comes to my mind. I see him "catching" Ronny in his arms after jumping from the building. I see a hand gently removing a bullet from the chamber of a gun.

I see Jesus on a dirty street corner picking up a broken man and cradling him once again.

Yes, God is silent. But sometimes...a picture is worth a thousand words.

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord.


  1. Mary,
    My prayers are with you in your grief. I remember Randy posting about Ronny after his death. The story is a sad one. I remember watching a my friend who is largely responsible for my return to my faith suffer and struggle with his addiction. The times he went missing, was homeless and looked like walking death itself. I too wondered where God was in all of this. My friend lives but with other problems. Heroin is ruthless. I pray Ronny is at peace now. I have always thought that God has a special reserve of mercy just for addicts. They can be the sweetest people you ever meet and they just can't seem to help themselves.
    May Mother Mary console you and Randy in your grief.

  2. Thank you, Karin.If it wasn't for Ronny, Randy and I would never have met. I wouldn't have Michaela. Randy had to struggle with forgiving Ronny while I am struggling to forgive the people who threw his body on the street. Ronny, I understood. He suffered from depression. And he was trying to fill that God-sized hole in his heart with all the wrong things. I am still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that anyone would throw a man's body in the street without even calling an ambulance though.
    I think God holds a special mercy for addicts too. I will keep your friend in my prayers. A few years ago my cousin lost his son to heroin. He was only 22. Heroin is causing big problems in our small city. You're right, it is ruthless.

  3. Mary, I hope that through my prayer I can share some of your grief. I don't think there is any drug in existence that is worse in terms of addiction than heroin. But after all the miracles he survived, I have to believe that God had a very specific time he wanted to take him, and that your prayers and the prayers of others kept him with us until the Lord called him. I know that sounds strange, but I guess it's just my feeling about it. It's a mystery why God brings such souls into our lives, but I think it is as much for us as it is for them. Prayers and love.

  4. Thanks Maria. He received even more miracles than the ones I mentioned in my old post. A few weeks before he passed away he overdosed, died, and was revived. He went into a drug program and was determined to overcome his addiction. He left the facility after a few days and died not long after. He was 40 years old. It started innocently enough. He was in a bad car accident and was prescribed painkillers. He got addicted to them and it spiralled downward from there.

    Maria, it doesn't sound strange. This was not an evil man. I think the Lord is healing him even now. This morning God brought the tears I was holding back through. I've been upset since he died and I simply asked the Lord to be with me in a special way today and shortly after all the grief I was holding onto poured out. Writing about it helped too. It always helps for some reason. I was going to take the post down but left it instead.

  5. Thank you, Anne. And thank you for your e-mail also. May we both catch our breath and arrange our thoughts in Him. I am praying for you too.

  6. I am sorry, too, Mary. I do not have words for you right now. Just prayers and hugs. Thanks for sharing your feelings with us.(((Mary)))

  7. Mary, I'm so sorry. Perhaps Our Lord couldn't bear to watch this dear man suffer anymore from depression and addiction. I pray that Jesus is healing Ronny now...and forever.

    Hugs and prayers to you.

  8. Mary, my prayers for Ronny and for his children and for you and Randy. Eternal rest grant to him O Lord and may your perpetual light shine upon him. Amen.

  9. Mary, I tried commenting earlier on my Android and poof, gone. I am sorry for the brokenness both you and Randy feel over Ronny's death, the way he died, and was found. It is a charism as you now to persist and offer intense intercessory prayer for someone and you know those prayers are heard and even the second part of your post seemed to show that unshakable faith of yours! Ronny may still need our prayers, so I will pray for him, and for you and Randy to be comforted and to find a moment of peace and light in your sorrow and frustration.

  10. May he rest in peace.


    God bless.

  11. Oh Mary, just when I thought I was going to get thru this day without crying for the first time in weeks, I read this post! I have no answers to your questions for God, only affirmation that, when all is said & done, His love is deeper than our pain. And Ronny's pain too.
    If it's any help--& it may not be-- my dad was a doctor and an alcoholic. He died when he was 57. Years later, in trying to process his death, my spiritual director told me that it was possible that Dad's addiction might have been his 'key' to heaven. He said that the inability to conquer addiction often leads to a humility that serves us much better at the hour of our death than the pride of a 'successful' life. That made sense to me & gave me hope.
    In Him,

  12. Mary, this post is a beautiful tribute to your friend. I say friend because I believe you were friends in Christ and I trust that He heard your prayers. My condolences and may he rest in peace where he will never suffer again.

  13. Thank you all for your kind comments. It's always troubling when someone dies in such a way as this. I entrust him to God's mercy.

    Thank you for sharing this with me. I hadn't thought of it from that angle and it gives me hope too. You are in my prayers. I've been reading your cousin's beautiful words - he was very insightful and full of faith and must have been a blessing (and still is) to many.