How Do I Pray For The Families Of Sandy Hook?

There are things mommies aren’t ever supposed to find.

They aren’t supposed to find themselves in a firehouse frantically looking for their child. They aren’t supposed to find their child’s name on a list of those who won’t be coming home. They aren’t supposed to find a dress to wear to their child’s funeral.

They aren’t supposed to turn their calendar and find a date circled for the birthday party they were supposed to be planning next month. The one that won’t be.

Or walk to the mailbox and find their child’s dentist appointment reminder card. The receptionist forgot to pull that one out.

Or find a book they know their child would love. Only half way to the check out counter they remember, they’re gone.

They aren’t supposed to find these things.

They aren’t supposed to find that grieving for a child is like navigating a path with chasms so wide their continued steps seem impossible. Terrifying. Hopeless.

I know these chasms. I watched my mom stare at them. I saw her wish she could fall in them and never have to take another painful step. I wept over everything she found reminding her my sister was gone.

That’s how I know what God would have me pray right now. For the families of the loved ones that lost so much last Friday. But especially for the mommies.

The mommies that even right now are finding things no mommy should have to find.

I want my prayers to slip into those chasms and somehow fill them. I am asking God to show me. Make me aware of the specific things those mommies might find in the months to come. When the black dresses are hanging in the closets. The media has packed up and gone home. The cards stop coming. The neighbors are back to normal.

And in the quietness of her own grief that mommy finds something. Something that breaks her heart all over again. And in that space of pure grief, she feels horrifically alone.

Please Lord, let my prayers go there. Prick my heart to fill that chasm with layers of prayers from my mommy heart. Let me take the deep grief of that moment so she doesn’t have to be so alone.

Though she won’t see me or hear my prayers, may she feel an unexplainable sense of Your presence. And know. You.

That’s what I pray she does find. You. With her. Comfort. Peace. Healing. Hope.

Oh God, show us how to pray.

“Know that wisdom is such to your soul; if you find it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off,” Proverbs 24:14.


  1. colleen says

    Dear Lord
    Heal the broken-hearted, the devastated, the mourning, the emptiness.
    Hold your grown children in Your lap as they grieve their small children.
    Let peace that surpasses all understanding cover them tightly and let Your love sink in their whole being. In the stillness and the quiet, be there. I ask in Jesus’ name that You boldly show your presence in Newtown and under the covers of tearful mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, grandmothers, grandfathers, and all families related. And cover our nation with your calming breath that we hold tight to one another and live out the law of love that You Son taught us Himself. In Your Name I pray. Amen.

  2. michele says

    Thank you Lysa. I pray God will show himself to those who are grieving right now in a way that will comfort them and give them peace only like he can. I pray for strength for those mommies in the days and years to come. I pray that God will give them peace in knowing that their babies are with him in his kingdom and are never alone. I pray for healing.

  3. Paula says

    I pray that Father God will wrap His loving arms around each and every family that has been touched by this horrible event. I know I can not hold each one of them in my arms but God can. I can’t take away or lessen their pain but God can. I can’t fill the void that has been left in their life but God can. I pray that our Heavenly Father will fill in the deep pits that each one of these mommies will experience. That thru the darkest times they may see a light. Father be with each one of them. Help us as Sisters in Christ be strong and not forget when the media has gone, that they still need our prayers

  4. lisa westmoreland says


  5. Nolette Brell says

    Lysa your blog broke me, yet reminds me to remember those children we never met and mourn with all those who knew and loved them…especially the mommies and daddies whose grief I can not come close to imagine.

    Charlotte Bacon, age 6
    Daniel Barden, age 7
    Olivia Engel, age 6
    Josephine Gay, age 7
    Ana M Marquez-Greene, age 6
    Dylan Hockley, age 6
    Madeleine F Hsu, age 6
    Catherine V Hubbard, age 6
    Chase […]
    Rest in Peace.

  6. says

    Dear Lysa,

    Your words were so comforting. Thank God, I haven’t lost a child, but I did lose both my parents this summer and I can only imagine what these parents are going through. My prayers are with them today and tomorrow.

  7. Jennifer says

    Dear Lord,
    Please provide Your Peace that passes all human understanding to these broken families and give the parents strength to carry on for the surviving siblings sakes. And I pray for this evil act to be used for Your Glory in ways we cannot imagine.

  8. Nolette Brell says

    Chase Kowalski – 10/31/05
    Jesse Lewis – 06/30/06
    James Mattioli – 03/22/07
    Grace McDonnell – 11/04/05
    Emilie Parker – 05/12/06
    Jack Pinto – 05/06/06
    Noah Pozner – 11/20/06
    Caroline Previdi – 09/07/06
    Jessica Rekos – 05/10/06
    Avielle Richman – 10/17/06
    Benjamin Wheeler – 09/12/06
    Allison Wyatt – 07/03/06

    Lauren Russeau 06/?/82
    Mary Sherlach – 0/11/56
    Rachel Davino – 7/17/83
    Anne Marie Murphy – 07/25/60
    Victoria Soto – 11/05/85
    Rest In Peace

    Let us not forget that day so that we can ALWAYS remember to pray for their love ones who are left behind to feel the loss and pain. In Jesus Name I pray. AMEN.

  9. Phyllis S says

    Lysa, Thank You for guiding us through this tragedy. I have been praying for these families and for all affected by the events of last Friday. I pray that they will get through these dark days and be able to see their children and the educators that protected them frolicking in the gardens in Heaven and able to hear their laughter once again.

  10. Margaret says

    Father God, Thank you for sending Jesus for “he heals the broken hearts and binds up their sorrows” for he will do this very thing for all the parents who lost their precious children last week. Lord, hold these dear families close to you that they may feel your almighty presence and be washed over with your perfect peace.
    In Jesus’ name, Amen

  11. Sally Brown says

    Yes, Lisa, it is for those little moments of recollection that we need to pray on behalf of these parents. These reminders of their precious children will continue for years to come. The best wisdom in prayer is found in God’s word. Pray for His Comfort, His Compassion, His Presence, His Promises; and above all, His LOVE.

  12. Ina says

    Dear God our Heavenly Father,
    Firstly, we say thank you for this day! We bless your Holy name and we give you all Glory, Praise and Adoration. We thank you for placing within us the right mind and heart to pray for the mothers and families in Connecticut during their time of loss. I know that you know the fullness of the magnitude of the heartache, pain and grief that each mommy and family is experiencing concerning the loss of their babies. God, we ask that you touch their hearts, minds, spirits, and souls and cause them to remember that you have not forsaken them and that you will be with them every step of the way through their loss. God, help them to know that you orchestrate all things, the good and the sorrowful. Please help them to know that you have everything under control! God we ask that you give them supernatural strength in their bodies to help them complete every task that they may encounter. God, block the physical ailments and possible illnesses that stress and grief may cause in Jesus name. God we ask that you rebuke the spirit of depression and anxiety, cause them to triumph over these things emotionally. God we ask that you supernaturally provide every financial need so that there will be no lack and no worry concerning provision. God we trust you and know that each and every prayer in this blog has been heard. We love you God and know that you are a ever-loving God who answers prayer. We say thank you in advance in Jesus name….AMEN!!!!!

  13. says

    Dear Lysa,
    My sentiments are just like Sandy H.’s Dec. 17. but in my case I have 2 nephews and a niece. I’m just simply crushed every time I boot up my computer and still see reminders of what happened in Newtown, CT. Even though my 2 nephews are of adult age and my niece I really don’t know is 13 or 14 could be gun down by some craze nutjob. I pray to God everyday that does NOT happen. So many lives lost that should not have been lost. Especially kids. I’m just simply numb. But at least there’s a happy side to all this. THEY’RE WITH JESUS! And that’s all I’m gonna say about that. God bless each and every one of you and Merry Christmas. Always remember that Jesus loves you and me too.

  14. Cynthia says

    My heart goes out to the families of Newtown, Ct. My prayer is that they will find peace and that God will comfort their their pain and suffering. I ask the Lord to help us as a nation to be a support to them will prayers and kind words. That government will find a way to incoporate gun control so these babies, teachers and other who have died from same kind of volience, lives will not go down in vain. Lord be there when they get weak let them feel your present and lift their spirit. In Jesus name I do pray, Amen.

  15. Beth Erickson says

    As a Grandmother, I pray for that group of people who in the face of this tragedy,find themselves both grieving the loss of that special grandchild, but also in the position of being a mother, trying to comfort their own children over their unimaginable loss. How impossible this would all be without you, Jesus. You are our Comforter. We ask that you would wrap yourself around those who hurt, stand watch, and protect those who are left. amen.

  16. Debby Yarbrough says

    Oh Father, I don’t have the words, but I know you do! I know that in my years of being a first responder it was when a child was hurt or killed because they could not defend themself was the worse. My heart bleeds for those left behind to pick up the pieces and move one step at time forward. Father help them in this horrible time of grieving for their children, their mother, their sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles and all that are touched by this loss. Children should not have to face the things that they faced just before they were taken from us! Father please I beg you to help me find a way to put You back in the schools, those children need you! Prayer was taken out of our schools because of a choice that an adult made not those innocent children! Show us that we can do it; give me or someone the vision to lead! I love and trust you with all my heart! In Your Sons Holy and Precious Name, Jesus’ Name, AMEN

  17. Chris says

    Father God, we come to you in our grief and ask for your wisdom in dealing with such tradgedy. The world has seen unspeakable evil and needs your loving hand to hold us up. We pray Lord, for the families who lost so much. Jesus, be with each and every one of them throughout their grieving, today and in the days to come. May all that pray and grieve draw closer to You. Please come soon Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

  18. Mary McCauley says

    Dear God, You who created each of us and know us better than we can imagine, who love us beyond our understanding, heal as only you can, be the comforter of these who suffer such pain, such loss. Give then your peace, oh Prince of Peace. Encourage them as they move forward, strengthen then when grief knocks them down again, help them to not give up or give in, but to reach out their hand to You. Amdn

  19. Wendy says

    Seven weeks ago our six year old foster son left for Mexico after being with us for 20 months. We haven’t been able to see or speak to him since that time. He spent almost 30% of his young life in our home and every time I see a picture, find a mismatched small sock, pick up a marble or Lego, or do any number of other small things that remind me of him, I cry. There is a low level hurt all the time, but the reminders make my heart break all over again each time. We didn’t really expect he would stay with us forever, but the heart wants what the heart wants. We can only be feeling a tiny portion of the pain that these parents are enduring. After all he was only supposed to be with us for short time (who knew it would be almost two years). He is alive and (hopefully) well and for that we thank Jesus. Except for parents who’ve lost a child too, how can any of us really understand how these parents feel? All we can do is pray for them as often as we can. May God bless and hold them in His comforting hands.

  20. Sandy says

    This older mommy is heartbroken for all these families and I pray they find some comfort and peace thru this horrible ordeal. My children are grown and I have a new grandson 7 months old. The thought of harm to them makes me sick to my stomach and I can only imagine the pain these families are suffering. Lord please wrap your loving arms around these families and help them thru this darkness so they may find peace knowing they will see their babies again in Heaven. Hold these little angels tight in your arms until mommy can get there and hold them again.

  21. cheri says

    The hymnist, Franklin Eiland, wrote: In my weakness be my strength, in my trials all. Be Thou near me all the day; hear me ev’ry call. Leave me not to walk alone, lest I droop and die. Let Thy Spirit go with me; and attend my cry. Keep my heart and keep my hand. Keep my soul, I pray. Keep my toungue to speak Thy praise. Keep me all the way.
    Thank You, loving GOD, for mercy.

  22. Catherine says

    Thank you dear Lysa for the reminder to pray and continue on praying. I couldn’t stop crying. I believe our prayers collectively will go out and touch and heal the broken hearted moms and all those affected by this horrible tragedy. I pray for the Lord’s leaves of healing to flutter down on the aching hearts and soothe the pain and lift the burdens and lighten the agony. I pray that His words of comfort will speak louder yet gently and lead these dear ones by the hand through this tumultuous journey. I pray for the supernatural whereby we can say, it is well with us for Christ walks with us leading us with His light through this dark tunnel. I pray for the Lord to fill the empties and though we hurt, we know He is there whispering, I will never leave you nor forsake you.

  23. Julie says

    Dear God, I pray that you would touch these grieving families and this community. I pray that you would comfort the hearts of those that are broken in such tragedy. Above all, Lord, make yourself known, glorify yourself in the midst of this awful event. Lord, I thank you today for the safety of my children. I can not imagine the suffering that these parents, siblings, teachers, and this community is going through and will continue to go through. Please keep them, Lord. Wrap Your sweet arms around them and allow them to feel Your presence. In Jesus name, Amen.

  24. says

    as a grandmother of a first grader I can’t fathom the grief the family mebers of the children are experiencing.
    my comfort is only in the belief that grace comes at the moment of need.so i pray that my prayers,and so many others,will lift them up and heal those so broken.
    as a believer I know the children and their heroic caregivers,and now celebrating in the glory of Jesus.It is the lives of those that are left,withhout their presence,that need our love and prayers.

  25. Vanessa says

    Dear Lysa,
    Thank you so much for helping me find the words to pray. I live in California and have 3 sons and a 6 year old daughter. I can[‘t even imagine what those families are going through. I have cried everyday since that tragic day at Sandy Hook. It’s difficult to watch TV bc it hurts so much. I will pray for each of those beautiful souls lost and each of thier families. May the Lord comfort them all.

  26. says

    Lord, we lift up these mommies to you and pray that you would commune with them as you too lost your child here on earth. I pray that you would comfort them with the knowledge that these little ones rest with you, where you wipe away every tear. Also, that you would touch the lives of mothers that don’t know you through this, God.

  27. JoEllen says

    After such a horrific tragedy, I am so thankful for the hope of heaven. I am thankful to know each child was met by the beauty of heaven and the extended hand of Jesus. My prayers now turn to each of their loved ones left behind. That they would come to know the love and saving grace of Jesus Christ and be assured of the hope of heaven, where their loved one waits.

  28. Donna says

    Heavenly Father,
    Thank You for Your grace and mercy and Thank You for the lives that were saved that day. Lord, apart from You we can do nothing and I pray that with each day that passes Father we come together in faith that You will heal the pain and will comfort the families who lost their loved ones. Please keep their memories alive and happy and not focos on this horric act but focus on the beauty of their lives…In the strong name of Jesus Christ, Amen

  29. Brenda says

    In church on Sunday God granted me a vision of all the people in the world that love Jesus raising above the sin of this act and standing side by side to blanket Newtown with God’s never ending love.We need to be bold declaring God’s love and forgiveness to all nations because only through God and his followers will the world be changed.

  30. says

    I pray that the Dear Lord has his arms wrapped around each and everyone of those precious babies, and the HOLY SPIRIT IS with their mommies……. IN JESUS NAME, AMEN . ANN

  31. Janna says

    Dear Heavenly Father,

    Be with the community of Newton Ct and Sandy Hook School. Give them comfort and strength to face each day without their loved one. I pray they will feel your peace. Be with those children who had to experience this horrible tragedy, surround them with your love and presence. In the precious name of Jesus……Amen.

  32. says

    My heart has been so heavy for those families who are walking a very dark road. I saw those beautiful innocent faces and prayed for them and the trauma their parents and siblings have endured.

    We do not know the why’s of life but we trust in the love and comfort of a loving Heavenly Father. I will continue praying for the days ahead and that soon sweet memories of happier times will replace the days that have been too hard to wrap arms around. May the families lean on family, friends, clergy and the assurance that our Lord is ever present; holding, comforting and drying tears.

  33. zandra says

    I Pray that God contiune to comfort the families and keep them strong with their Faith and through all their questions and doubts.

  34. Jody Dunn says

    I am so thankful that the Holy Spirit takes over where I leave off. It’s so hard to find the right words, but in all of this sadness and helplessness where we, the unknown prayer warriors reside all over our country, I find peace in my prayers. The Holy Spirit speaks to my heart and helps me feel like I got my requests made known to God in complete form. May God’s love and comfort fill the hearts of the families, and those of us who share in their grief. Thank you Father, for holding us up when we feel so weak.

  35. Bonnie Wisorf says

    I pray that God will minister to all those who lost loved ones at the Sandy Hook School shooting and that he will reach into the deepest part of their grief and comfort them. I pray that he will send them an overwhelming outpouring of love and support.

  36. Sherri says

    Dear Lord, I pray for these families, for the first responders and this community, I lift each one of them up to you comfort them and surround them with your love. When anyone questions were was God help them to know you were right there with each and everyone of the children and teachers holding there hand. Be with the families as they try to get threw this holiday season. In Jesus name…

  37. says

    at Julie: Thanks Julie for your prayer. I wasn’t involved in the tragedy, but your prayer helps me to relate as if I was part of the family and their community…and today GOD almighty, in Jesus’ wonderful name, I agree with Julie as we approach the thrown of your goodness and grace… Amen

  38. says

    My Heavenly Father, I come just as I am before your Holy Throne of mercy and grace, as a Mother and Grandmother of 6. My heart goes out to each family that has been affected by this evil act of violence against precious souls. We as a Nation stand with each family in their loss and suffering. Father, You are our Great Comforter and I pray You will wrap Your loving arms around each family and hold them close to Your heart and comfort each of them in their time of loss. It is during these sad times in our lives Father, that You carry us through each day, till we are strong enough to handle our grief. My prayer is that this will bring something good that will bring glory, honor and praise to Your Holy name. I lift up the principal, the other adults who gave their lives in the line of fire to help save many from harm and death. I lift up those first responders, police officers, the E.M.T.’s , teachers, parents and the community of NewTown that were there in the time of great need. Give us wisdom, guidance and direction on how we can keep our children safe from all the evil and darkness that surrounds us everyday. Father, I Thank You for your great love through grace. In Jesus’ holy and precious name I pray and believe. Amen and Amen

  39. Debbie Berger says

    Dearest Lord Jesus
    My prayer is for these Sandy Hook moms and any mom that has last her child.
    Please embrace them in their darkest hour. Please allow them to feel your presence.
    Please surround them with loved ones and family members that want to truly help and support them. Please give them time to grieve their loss. Please give them physical strength. Please give them emotional strength. Please let them have the presence of mind to let you in and to lean not to their own understanding, but to trust in you.
    Thank you Lord Jesus…….Amen

  40. Brenda Whicker says

    Dear Lisa,
    I sit here with tears running down my face after having read your blog and the comments of those who have responded to it. I am a mother, a grandmother, and most importantly, a Christian. I have been praying for the families of all who were lost on Friday but I didn’t realize what I specifically needed to say. Now I know. Your words brought back so many memories of my children that the young parents of Sandy Hook will never have with their babies. I cannot comprehend the sorrow they must feel but I know that their loss is beyond belief. May they feel the prayers coming from North Carolina, from me, tonight.

  41. Ada says

    Lord, please comfort these families in the way only You can. Hold them. Heal them. May the Holy Spirit mantle them. In Jesus’ name.
    This is heart breaking. Thanks Lisa for the post and prayer.

  42. Stephanie says

    Dear Father God, I pray that your spirit of peace flow over each mommy and daddy as they fully take in the lost of their precious child. And dear Lord, may you send them the spirit that makes forgiving easy, so that they may heal.And the spirit of knowing that their children can not be in a better place, than safely resting with you.As hard as it may feel for them in years to come, let them remember the joyful days spent and not the painful days they’ve gained.And most of all, that they know that sometimes through horrific times we some how must see some good.And that these parents see how their lost has made this journey of getting to you oh Lord and knowing your presence was not in vain.

  43. Margaret says

    Dear Lord,
    Please welcome the souls of those we lost, into your Holy Kingdom. Please be close to the families who were touched by this horrible tragedy. Please comfort them and stay close to them in the months and years to come. Pleas, Lord, heal our nation, and bring Your people back to You. We are lost, Lord…we need Your guidance in our lives.

    I ask this in Jesus’ Name.

  44. Sue says

    God bless all the families affected by the Sandy Hook tragedy and may God give you all the strength and love you need. The world is saddened and will never forget all those brave souls. I am so sorry for your loss – parent to parent, human being to human being, child of Got to child of God. I am so sorry …….

  45. Deb says

    This prayer is for all the family and friends touched by last Friday’s horrible events. I know that God is standing right beside you. Reach out to him, fall into his arms, lean on him. He will comfort, calm, lead, and take care of you when you need him. When you feel you can’t go on and something else reminds you of your loss let God take over. God Bless You.

  46. Shelley says

    Dear Lord, I pray for your healing love and peace to the mommies, daddies, and families who lost their precious babes. I pray for the teachers, school administrators and their families. My heart breaks for each and everyone of them. We are so very grateful for those whom protected and saved so many of the children there that day. They are angels among us. I pray for all the schools, parents and children who are scared and weary following this tragedy. Thank you to Lysa for this powerful prayer. It certainly touched my heart and I will continue to pray for them all. In Jesus name…Amen.

  47. Kim Doeden says

    Dear God,
    Please be with the families of Sandy Hook, but especially the mom’s. My heart aches for them. Please comfort them and give them peace, hope, and love. I pray for all those that have lost loved ones. Thank you Lord for sending your son into this world for all of us sinners. Please be with us this Christmas and place love and thankfulness in our hearts.

  48. Deb says

    Oh, Holy Comforter, especially in this season of Christmas, reach out to the families of Sandy Hook Elementary School. Grant peace to their broken hearts. Remind them – always – of the promise of the resurrection. Thank you, dear Father. In Jesus’ name, Amen.