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Thursday 26 November |
Saint Leonard of Port Maurice

Good Friday is no day of false hope...

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Elizabeth Scalia - published on 04/14/17

I’ve had this line by Paul Simon in my head all day, and it seems appropriate to the day…

No, I would not give you false hope, on this strange and mournful day

And the next line isn’t inappropriate to this season we’re entering into, either, not entirely:

But the mother and child reunion is only a motion away

A big, unimaginable motion, and right now — with our tabernacles empty, as we head into Holy Saturday, which is such a long day of longing because they have taken our Lord and we do no have access to him. And there seems to be no hope.

But we must have hope; God would not give us false hope, no…

Still, for now, all we can do is sit within the empty, and trust and believe that there is something to hope for, and remembering why we call this Friday “Good”.

Fr. Robert McTeigue wrote this week that holding on to hope in times of despair is an intentional choice. I think he is right. It’s not easy but, as they say in baseball, “If it were easy, it wouldn’t be great…”

As we wait through these long hours, some of us sitting before open tabernacles that, in their emptiness seem like open graves into which we could so easily fall, there is much to think about.

Aleteia is featuring an unusual presentation of the 7 Last Words of Christ. Rather than going to the usual writers found within the Catholic internet we went looking for people who do not usually write their thoughts: a cop takes from Christ’s thirst a lesson in “serving the spiritual needs of those I meet, not just the physical”. A palliative care doctor sees Christ’s merciful promise of paradise in the dying patients she treats. Students away from home behold their mother, or the lessons of surrendering themselves into God’s hands. A nurse observes when “it is finished”, a grieving mother stands abandoned and forsaken, and asks why. And a would-be anchoress reflects on how saying “Father forgive them, they know not what they do” is a key component of healing — the thing for which we all hope.

And God would not give us false hope, no…not on this strange and mournful day.

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