Good Friday’s Warning

chedBy Ched Myers. For Good Friday.

“From noon on, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon.” (Matthew 27:45)

In this greatest of cosmic “signs” in the gospel narrative–the darkening of the world for three hours—our attention is pointed back to the old Exodus story.  There Yahweh, in the war of myths with Pharaoh to free the Hebrew slaves, blots out the sun in Egypt for three days–a repudiation of the imperial order legitimized by the sun god Ra. The rhetoric describing this penultimate plague is evocative: “People could not see one another, and for three days they could not move from where they were” (Ex 10:23). What a trope for collective blindness, denial and paralysis, so fitting to the culture of empire still today! (For more on this, see my piece here.)

This Good Friday falls at or near the peak of the Covid-19 plague in the U.S. At the “apocalyptic moment” of Jesus’ crucifixion, we are supposed to pay attention to the lesson of plagues: they are the dramatic expression of the great struggle between Creation and Empire–and of the God who takes sides.

Maybe at 3 pm today we should be out on our porches banging pots for that

Ched Myers, an ecumenical activist theologian, is a popular educator, writer, teacher and organizer, committed to animating and nurturing church renewal and radical discipleship, and supporting faith-based movements for peace and justice. Find his blog, many articleswebinars and a few audio recordings at chedmyers.org. You can also find out more about his Life & Activism there. Ched’s books are available for purchase on this site.

Holy Week Actions!

Seattle2Whidbey Island (WA) based spiritual director and activist Marcia Dunigan reports that earlier in the week, she threw in with about 60 others (including small children) witnessing at a Table Turning event (right) in Seattle in front of the ICE administration building in the rain and cold. This is from the Table Turning website:

Tragically, institutional Christianity in the U.S. has become aligned with nationalism and capitalism. So the aims of Table Turning are:

  • Reclaiming the subversive tradition of Jesus in the public sphere
  • Centering marginalized voices to tell their own story and define their own identity, while interrupting a culture that allows only the powerful to be heard
  • Increasing participation in faith-based social justice activism
  • Repentance and realignment of our own lives away from oppression and toward liberation

Continue reading “Holy Week Actions!”

A Good Friday Homily

Miserere-Plate-LVII
“Obedient unto death, even death on a cross.” Georges Rouault 1948

By Tom Cornell, Co-founder of Catholic Peace Fellowship

After the Last Supper, Jesus and his companions walked across the Kedron Valley to Gethsemane, the Mount of Olives.  If you visit Israel today, you will surely want to see the Mount of Olives where Jesus suffered his Agony in the Garden.  You come to a little stream at the bottom of the valley on the way.  The guide tells you, “This is the Kedron River.” You are surprised.  It’s not much of a river now, just a little stream, not much more than a trickle.  You can hop over it.  It was broader then, the guide tells you.  Jesus and the apostles took their sandals off to wade across.  Imagine it. Continue reading “A Good Friday Homily”

Good Friday in Detroit: It’s a Sad Day

imageToday, the Detroit Peace Community walked the Stations of the Cross through the city as it does each year, led by the question: Where is Jesus being crucified in this time and place? Were a station written to represent each injustice that has Detroit in its grip at this moment, we would be walking for weeks rather than a mere three hours on Good Friday afternoon.
Continue reading “Good Friday in Detroit: It’s a Sad Day”

Stations of the Cross through the Streets of Detroit

good fridaysI learned the liturgical year as a child by where we put our bodies. Mondays in Advent were spent at Williams International where they were making cruise missiles and Good Friday was spent walking the streets of Detroit. This walk has been happening since before I was born and I’ve walked it every year of my life. As a community, we spend Lent thinking about where we see the Cross today. Where is crucifixion happening today. Then together on Good Friday, we name it out loud by taking our bodies and a wooden cross to those places.

This year when we think about the Crucifixion we are thinking about the poor being pushed out to make way for gentrification. We are thinking about water shut offs and privitized education system. We are thinking about drones and black lives matter. Today, hundreds of us join together reading these words together. We invite you to join us in reading a couple of them here.

– Lydia Wylie-Kellermann Continue reading “Stations of the Cross through the Streets of Detroit”