Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Ain't Gonna Study War No More
If there is any time in the Church Calendar, Holy Week, the time when we walk the Via Crucis--the Way of the Cross is to not just to focus on the life of Jesus, but to recognize in our lives and the lives of others the suffering that is there. It is a time when I can bring the pain of my own life to witness how evil seems to triumph over good. We come to Good Friday and we can stay entombed with our issues and our stances. OR we can push on to Easter, to an Easter faith that says we are one in God's love that provides resurrection, the healing of all our divisions.
Our Anglican denomination/Communion has needed to look critically at how it has ignored the presence of evil in our lives and in our institutions that proclaim Christ's vulnerability as incarnated goodness. We have needed to focus on how institutional evils can look so appealing and so efficient when what they threaten is the kind of wars that will continue to divide and conquer the message of love. Am I saying that the Anglican Covenant is evil? No. I am saying that the Communion has often taken the easy way out of conflict by avoiding the hard walk of the Via Crucis--to stand in solidarity at the foot of the Cross together in the face of hard issues.
It is easy for me to say that the draconian laws against LGBTQ folks in African countries are evil. It is harder for me to say that American foreign policies with African nations are equally evil, equally devoid of caring. It is harder to make inroads on LGBT issues when American pharmaceutical companies charge outrageous prices for HIV/Aides drugs when a pandemic is decimating whole generations of African peoples. It is easy to say that Muslim terrorism is evil, but it is harder to admit that Quran burning is equal to it. It is easy to say that big business is evil as it crushes the grassroots of international small business. But it is harder to admit that each day I participate in it and enjoy its riches.
It is this Via Crucis that we as a Communion must walk. It is this standing together at the foot of the Cross that can once again help us to know that war is not the way of faith. It is in the Felix Culpa that we understand the bitter entanglement of good and evil, our participation in it, the frustration in righting it but
For all our 'standing firm in faith' it is perhaps better that we find ways in which we can not appeal to a Church Triumphant, but respond to the utter exhaustion of having warred too much in the name of faith. I no longer want to 'fight the good fight with all my might' over the ISSUES. I much more want to sit with those who disagree with me and break bread together.