Thursday, May 10, 2018

Christina Grimmie's Legacy Has Just Begun

There is an old tradition of marking the one month anniversary of a person's death with special remembrance and prayer. It is unusual, however, to continue marking every month for 23 months (and counting...).

Christina Grimmie is simply unforgettable.

There are many reasons for this, one of which is the pioneering role she played in helping to carve out a new space for artists to express their creativity. For her own part, she filled that space for seven years with the gratuitous gift of her enormous talent and her inspiring human presence and goodness.

In these past two years, the Grimmie family has continued to foster her musical legacy, and has opened new avenues for the movement of love that Christina initiated from within her own beautiful heart. Tomorrow, the Grimmie family will release another of Christina's original songs, and Team Grimmie "frands" from literally all over the world will continue to share their own creative tributes to her in a wide variety of forms and venues.

What is it about Christina Grimmie? Why is she still so important for so many people?
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She was a sweet, kind, fun-loving human being; she was an extraordinarily talented young person whose life was taken too soon; she was very much a normal girl beginning to become a lovely young woman; she had a bright future yet she was still accessible and authentic and grounded.

It was a tragedy that should cause us sorrow, even if we never knew her. There are too many tragedies like this in our poor, violent, and suffering world.

But with Christina there is something more; something that has cast a wide circle of impact, and that continues to resonate, to endure, and to grow.

In her 22 years in this world, Christina Grimmie took up the popular music idiom and the means of communication of our time and changed them, not only by her singular, spectacular voice, but above all by investing them with her own person, through her courage to take risks, her persistent desire to give of herself, and the deep gratitude that she expressed for life and other people.

It has become impossible for an old cynic (like me) to say, "There's no way anything good can come from pop culture today" or "there's nothing good that can come from all this crazy new media."

...Because...there is Christina Grimmie!

Something good has already happened in the midst of our deeply ambivalent culture, a space for love has opened up, and that space can grow.

No one knows what the future holds, but insofar as music and communications media increase in their capacity to bring people together in authentic human ways, Christina Grimmie will be remembered as one of the protagonists who took the first steps and opened the doors to new possibilities.

She will be remembered, and honored and loved.

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Original photo credit to owner (please notify me for any appropriate citation). Text and layout are by John Janaro. Credit to Christina Grimmie for being an inspiration to us all...and to Jesus Christ her Lord who gave her the gift of her voice, whom she loved and for whom she sang.

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