HOMILY FOR GOOD FRIDAY by Fr Hugh
When we look upon the Cross, what do we see? If you have one to hand just have a look, if not imagine it. Have we become too used to it do you think?
What place have nails in a person’s hands and feet? Isn’t that perverse? What place has one human being to to hang another in the air on a cross of wood? Isn’t that grotesque? Can’t we see that this is not normal behaviour? What place has a natural plant that flowers the Spring – we can see it today- What place has it being twisted out of shape and pushed hard onto a person’s head by another human’s hands? Can we see that the image of the Cross has to have the figure Jesus on it to reveal what humans are capable of?
In the words of Isaiah today “so disfigured did he look that he seemed no longer human,” made so by human hands. The Cross mirrors what we are capable of, when we, loved by God, forget and do our worst.
The history of the 20th century revealed it only too well. Our current history that leaves hundreds of thousands in camps, refugees to drown in the sea, that exploits the wars that put them there, that sells arms for profit that feeds those wars. That takes a beautiful world and mistreats it so much for gain that the prophecy of William Blake of green fields being filled with dark Satanic mills and the conditions they reduced people to, goes on and increases in many countries. That while a global virus shows us how much goodness there is in us, it also reveals the greed that puts people out of work for profit, increases prices in times of shortage, manipulates illness for gain at the expense of life. The Cross questions all this: ‘How could you mar such God-given beauty?” Jesus deliberately descends into our worst depths, mirrors them back to us, and lifts us out from there and restores us to our natural goodness. For we are created good.
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