The phone lines here at the Daily Sun News were buzzing last week when a "hit list" surfaced at Sunnyside High School.
Most of the calls were from concerned parents and community members looking for information or to share concerns.
Others were interested in sharing the latest gossip.
In sorting through the calls, two things became apparent.
1. A lot of people care about the safety of Sunnyside High School students.
2. A few, thankfully only a few, almost seemed downright chipper about the prospects of a list, as if it could be good fodder for coffee banter.
What I didn't hear from any of the callers was that they were praying for the school.
And that surprised me given the number of churches and church-goers in Sunnyside.
After all, prayer may have been taken out of the schools long ago, but that doesn't mean we can't pray for the school's students, staff and administrators.
I'm sure some of them would appreciate the prayers, and goodness knows I, for one, could use the practice.
I know the list was a reminder for me that I need to include the schools more in my prayers.
Yes, the violence and the absence of God or moral absolutes in our public education system are concerns.
Concern, though, can turn into a complaint session real quick.
But we can rise above that and turn concern into care.
We can take action.
We can and should pray for the schools. Maybe we can even visit the campuses in Grandview, Mabton and Sunnyside and pray on site-prior permission may be needed during school hours-to seek God's guidance and protection.
If you're organizing something like that, let me know. Those would be awesome school news calls to field and cover.
And maybe, just maybe, as a result we'll have fewer calls about school violence to field.