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Rachel Joy Scott's Mother: We Need to Raise Up Christian Warriors
Rachel Joy Scott's Mother: We Need to Raise Up Christian Warriors

Rachel Joy Scott's Mother: We Need to Raise Up Christian Warriors

By Jacob Sahms

On National See You at the Pole Day, students gather together at the flagpole to share their faith publicly. This year, on the day of that celebration that her own daughter would have been proud of, I caught up with Beth Nimmo, the mother of Rachel Joy Scott. Scott, the first student killed in the Columbine High School shooting in 1999, is the subject of the upcoming Pure Flix film, I’m Not Ashamed.

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Nimmo admitted that she hasn’t been back to Columbine High much since her youngest son graduated from the same school where her daughter died. But while the school itself is a place of great pain for her, she warmed quickly to talking about the film and its message.

Nimmo told me that she was happy with the film, that it authentically portrayed Rachel and her personality, her hopes and dreams, desires and faith. The mother of this modern-day martyr said that the family scenes were tender, but that the shooting proved difficult to watch. And Nimmo reinforced what I saw when I watched the film: Masey McLain became Rachel.

“I gave Rachel’s original journals to Masey, and she spent every night devouring those journals,” remembered Nimmo. “I believe she got inside of Rachel’s skin, inside of Rachel’s head. She could experience what Rachel was feeling, that gave her the edge to portray her the way she did. I personally believe that she did a marvelous job; I call her my little Rachel.”

“Masey resembles her in so many ways, not just the way she looks but the way she behaves, and the way she looks at the world. I believe Masey captures the good and the bad Rachel experienced, thanks to the time she took.”

As a mother, Nimmo said that she first learned of Rachel’s struggle to be the person she wanted to be through reading her deceased daughter’s journals.

“We were a close family even though we were a broken family. Her father and I were divorced when she wasn’t quite seven - which was painful. But we had family prayer in the morning, family meetings. Being a single mother with five kids, I did what I could to keep us together.”

“We need to be proactive as parents, finding out what is going on in their lives. They say that the squeaky wheel gets the oil and Rachel was never the squeaky wheel. I found out after her death when I was going through her journals, her writings, and her drawings. Her desire to be used by the Lprd and be put to use to reach other kids. I consider myself a pretty normal parent - but I realized I wasn’t as connected as I thought I was.”

Now, Nimmo advocates that parents be more involved and more aware, to stay engaged with what their children are doing and experiencing. “Put away whatever consumes your time. A parent should be the safest place a child can go when they have concerns or questions, but often they hide things from us and we’re the last ones to know. I think that’s a sad reflection how we’ve given up parental responsibilities and let culture raise our children. The culture teaches double standards we don’t agree with. It’s time to take back the home.”

Of course, I’m Not Ashamed is not just about parenting; there is a significant portion of the film devoted to Rachel’s faith as well. “I want people to experience that living your life for the Lord has struggles. Rachel wasn’t a sanitized Christian, she had regrets but she got more right than wrong,” Nimmo said. “She had a strong desire, a strong resolve, to be used by God. God trusted her to be a light in a very dark place.”

“I want kids to understand that they don’t have to be perfect to be used by God. Our long term goal is that we’ll raise an army of young warriors because Rachel wrote about being a warrior for Christ. We hope that the result will be great and steadfast even in hard times and bad days.”

With that focus on faith, Nimmo told me that she hoped others would see it and be transformed. With faith and love, Nimmo believes that even bullies can be transformed, that the lives of high school students and others can be altered for the better. It is what Nimmo’s daughter lived and died for; now, she hopes the film will inspire others to do the same.


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