Tonight was the premiere of the movie Amish Grace on Lifetime Movie Channel. I have cried (many times) out of grief and out of joy in my almost 50 years of life, but until tonight I have never shed a tear out of awe. The movie is a dramatization of the tragic events of October 2, 2006; where Charles Carl Roberts IV entered the one room school house in Nickel Mines PA. He shot ten girls ranging in ages from 6 to 13. Of the ten girls shot, five died. For A VERY detailed writing of the events please go HERE.
The movie that followed is based on a book called “Amish Grace: How Forgiveness Transcended Tragedy,”. The authors of the book are David L. Weaver-Zercher, Donald B. Kraybill, Steven M. Nolt. Both Kraybill and Nolt have written other books on the amish and their way of life. However, when it came time to consult on the movie they refused the offer saying “Out of respect to our friends in the Amish community and especially those related to the Nickel Mines tragedy, we declined the producer’s requests to consult and assist in the development of a film,” the press release stated. “We do know that Amish people are skeptical of movies and books about Amish life that blur fact and fiction, and particularly a movie that addresses such a painful subject. For that reason and others, we decided not to assist the filmmakers in the course of the movie’s production.”
The movie was based on the book of the events of that tragic day and the aftermath of how the families, the amish community and many of us who live in Pennsylvania surrounded by the amish, have come to terms with the events that unfolded. There have been many articles written about the events that have unfolded that October day and more written about the movie itself. To the latter there are positive reviews and negative as well.
But I think most people are missing the whole point of the movie. As Tanya Lopez, senior vice president of original movies for Lifetime put it: “There are things we can learn from the Amish that will help in our daily lives.” This movie satisfies an insatiable curiosity that the “english” have concerning the very private lives of the amish sure; but it goes much deeper than that. This movie is a lesson in forgiveness, it’s a lesson of God’s teachings of forgiveness. It says in the Lords Pray (and many places within the Holy Bible) “And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us”.
The concept of forgiveness has been one that has eluded me over JR’s vaccine injuries since we ascertained that they are actually vaccine reactions and not this mysterious set of disorders known as autism. However, I think watching Amazing Grace has finally given me a key to aide in that forgiveness. But I shall still struggle with it as I am certain those amish families still struggle daily with their own forgiveness. May God help us all.