Sunday, April 5, 2009
It has been nine days since Sandra Cantu disappeared from the mobile home park and a different feel has crept into the story. On Saturday I found one search team after another as they scoured the land north of town. Crews checked irrigation canals, ditches, heavy brush piles and weed-filled fields. Volunteers crisscrossed the city putting up photos of the missing girl. But today an eerie quiet seems to have descended on the search.
I covered my fourth candlelight vigil tonight as community members gathered to pray for Sandra’s safe return. As candles flickered in the darkness one theme shined through. Faith was the topic for those gathered to keep hope for Sandra’s return alive.
It has been easy to get depressed covering this story. Every day since her disappearance the story has dominated the news and most of my time at work. I have covered the search through the garbage, the search along the river, the search in farmland and fields. Despair starts to creep in as no results are found.
At the vigil tonight the question was asked how can a little girl just disappeared, what kind of evil exists to do this and how could God let this happen to our town? The answer is hard from some, faith. Faith that that Sandra is still alive, faith that she will return alive. Those attending were urged not to let their faith falter and give up hope but to keep looking.
As the vigil ended they vowed to return every night to lift their candles high as they keep the will that they will find Sandra bring her home. It’s all about faith that can move mountains and keep hope alive.