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From NPR, Host Guy Raz talks with Eugene Peterson about dealing with grief and moments of tragedy.
Full interview here.

RAZ: How do you begin to cope with a kind of grief like this?
PETERSON: By not talking too much about it. Silence is sometimes the best thing to do, holding a hand, hugging somebody. There are no adages that explain or would make any difference to the suffering. Sometimes people say, I don't know what to say to these people. You know, I say don't say anything. Just hold their hand. Hold them, hug them and just stay around for an hour or so in silence and just be there. That's what we need at times like this, an affirmation of the sacredness of life, the holiness of life.

RAZ: I know that you gave thousands of sermons over your three decades as a pastor. And, of course, during times of crisis and in times of grief, what have you done in moments of grief? What has comforted you?
PETERSON: The presence of friends, mostly their silence, not talking too much. I remember when my mother died, and I had the funeral, and I broke down in the middle of this homily, of the Scripture reading. And I tried to contain myself, and I couldn't, and so I finally just cried. It didn't last long, maybe 20 seconds or 30 seconds. And when the service was over, I didn't want to talk to anybody. And I went into a little side room - it was not my own congregation - and sat. And my daughter came in and sat beside me. And she was about 25, 24 at the time.
And a man came in I didn't know. And he put his arm across my shoulders, and he started giving me cliches and talking God talk. And after a few minutes of that, he left. And I said to my daughter Karen: Oh, Karen, I hope I've never done that to anybody. And she said - she was so dear. She says: Oh, daddy, I don't think you'd ever do that. But I had done that. But you learn not to do that when you've been through this a few times.

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