The Independent Newsweekly
Issue Date: April 18, 2003
From the Editors Desk
Under normal circumstances, understanding the power of Easter is a difficult matter.
I know the words, the concepts, and in personal moments I have known the profound and deep touch of Gods love. I also know, however, that the Easter Alleluia did not remain a personal moment for long. The community, we are led to believe, fairly quickly buzzed with the rumor, the crazy rumor, and then with the reality.
The community soon got into some nasty fixes over the conviction that he had risen. And I have to wonder, what did Easter mean to them then?
Under normal circumstances its difficult and this year, at war anew, the difficulty is multiplied.
The tug is between a dictator toppled and the sin of a new war. We havent begun, as of this writing, to count the dead. We havent begun to understand the cost to families ripped apart. We dont know the eventual cost in old alliances lost or new enemies gained.
We keep the cameras on the jubilant crowd toppling the statue of the dictator. We avoid the hospitals overrun and the roadside graves, the columns of armored vehicles ripped apart from the skies, now death containers.
Can one move toward Easter celebrating a military victory? Will that joy fit in our sanctuary? Find expression in our liturgy? Can it?
In the confusion -- my tiny understanding of what an infinite God accommodates quickly reaches its limits -- Ill seek solace in prayer. Its really the best weve got at wits end and some, I know by now, are better prayers than others. One especially rich prayer crossed my desk in recent days. It is from Gabe Huck, an expert liturgist, author, devoted peacemaker and former director of Liturgy Training Publications in Chicago.
Huck made several trips in the recent past to Iraq, so his prayer, which I am happy to share below, issues from a considerable experience of the place that has so captured our attention in recent weeks.
God of all who are frightened,
-- Tom Roberts
My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
National Catholic Reporter, April 18, 2003
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