Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Too Many Alleluias

Lectio Divina

Revive us now, God, our helper!

Justice shall march ... and peace shall follow.

Psalm 85:5, 14 (The Grail Psalter)


Continuing Dietrich, Broken and Shared. Turning to the Boston newspapers, as you can imagine.


Three dead, scores injured, hundreds and hundreds traumatized from the bombings at the Boston Marathon. You will forgive me if I don't feel very much like saying alleluia as much as we do in our liturgies. It is taking some effort to vocalize it -- that is, to re-vocalize it as an act of resistance, a holy rebellion against violence.

Alleluia: It means "praise God," in Hebrew. Praise God.

No, I will not praise death and destruction. No, I will not praise the acts of violence, the works of war writ large and small. Yes, I will praise God, the God of life, the God of love.

Our Capuchin brothers in Jamaica Plain, Mass., are safe. Brother Will's sister works in downtown Boston and was approaching the finish line from Beacon Hill when the explosions went off. She is safe.

I do not know yet if all my Boston-area friends are safe and unshaken. It's the first time since I left Facebook that I wish I were on that network so I could find out quickly. When you are able, friends, drop a comment here on the blog and a prayer.

I was in Manhattan on Sept. 11, 2001. I survived, but people I knew did not. After that terror attack, my primary emotions were sadness and fear.

I was not in Boston yesterday. Today, my primary emotion is anger. I am deeply offended. I feel this in a way that so many others outside of New York City felt the Sept. 11 attacks. Although I was not born there and do not live there right now, Boston is my city, and my people live there. For the last 24 hours all I have wanted is to be there.

More than ever, I want to answer the violence of the world with the "weapons of the spirit": fasting, prayer, and self-giving. That is what I can do when I don't know what to do. And doing these things will help me see what more I can do.

"Revive us now, God, our helper" (Psalm 85:5). God bless Boston, and God help our world. 

Continuing to do exegesis on Mark 15, dealing with the death of Jesus. Done with watering the grounds. Now to call a friend from Cambridge, Mass.


Cool and only a little cloudy, and even though they are an ordinary puffy white, the clouds look clear to me.

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