Reflection: Mercy to Earth (Americas)
During this wonderful Eastertime I am aware of two emotions that seem to be felt by those who witnessed Jesus’ dying and his rising – grief and joy. Think of any story of this Easter season and notice how these feelings well up. My favorite is the scene of Mary Magdalene, arriving at the tomb that Easter morning (perhaps she never left!). Such devotion and love for Jesus yielded grief at the violence of his death and loss she experienced. And then, hearing her name spoken so tenderly again from his lips, “Mary.” And her joyful response, “Rabboni!”
This interplay of grief and joy reminds me of a work of the U.S. poet, Mary Oliver. Oliver notices “We shake with joy, we shake with grief. What a time they have these two, housed as they are in the same body.” We know these feelings and we experience how quickly one yields to the other in our daily life.
As we approach Earth Day 2018 grief and joy can, once again, play out in our experience on multiple levels. In Laudato Sí Pope Francis reminds us that this wonderful world of ours is a sacrament, a place of communion with God and our neighbors. Creation is the venue where the divine and human meet (#9). Oh, what joy to partake in this communion...
Messages to: Suzanne Gallagher rsm - Justice Coordinator Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Mid-Atlantic Community