|photo by Jim Forest / fiickr|
"Near the cross of Jesus
there stood his mother,
his mother's sister,
Mary the wife of Clopas,
and Mary Magdalene."
--John 19. 25
There is no sadder day than
when the hearse pulls up--
the men come in, excuse you
and move toward your loved one who just died.
They close the door.
In what seems to be an eternity the door opens--
and there is a gurney and underneath the
white covering is the dead body of the person
They take him/her out the door--into the back
of the hearse and drive away.
You stand there by the open door
with your hand over your mouth.
It must have been like that for Jesus' mother,
her friends and John.
They were immobilized.
Joseph of Aramathea--a rich man--and Nicodemus
whom we met one starry night--
take down the broken body of the dead Jesus.
Mary reaches out her arms to hold for a last time--
the son she nursed and loved all his short life.
"My son," she says, what have they done to you?"
It is an old question that echoes through the years.
What have they done to you?
He is one with all the suffering ones.
Whoever Mary there is--he is there.
Later when the grief is not so choking
his followers will take up the fight.
And what they did to him--they will do
to the others, too.
All the disciples, save one met their death
at the hands of his enemies.
But they are just a few of that long, long line.
Francis and Dietrich and Martin and Dorothy and Theresa
and Nelson and Mahat and all the others.
He had said as often you do it not
unto the least of these
you have done it not to me.
What have we done--or not done--to him and all
those others that follow in his train?
Could we, in our little way, in our little place--
join that holy company who made the world
a better place.
Like the rich man that came to take the body
And the doubting one who helped him that day.
Like them, perhaps what we do matters too.
--Roger Lovette / rogerlovette.blogspot.com