A very brief reflection this weekend……We already have so much to think about.
In 1975 the Catholic bishops from across 13 states issued a remarkable pastoral letter: “This Land is Home to Me.” It touched me back then and still does today. The letter was written in a free-verse poetic style.
Although the focus in 1975 was overcoming the economic hardship and political powerlessness of the people of Appalachia, it still speaks to all of us in 2020.
The concluding lines of the letter ring so true, in our days of pandemic health crises and socio-political disorder and conflict. They are a reminder of what we are really about. A reminder that living together and working together bring hope and healing.
Dear sisters and brothers,
we urge all of you
to be a part of the rebirth of utopias,
not to stop living,
to recover and defend the struggling dream.
For it is the weak things of this world
which seem like folly,
that the Spirit takes up
and makes its own.
The dream of the mountains’ struggle,
the dream of simplicity
and of justice,
like so many other repressed visions
is, we believe,
the voice of Yahweh among us.
In taking them up,
hopefully the Church
might once again
be known as
– a center of the Spirit,
– a place where poetry dares to speak,
– where the song reigns unchallenged,
– where art flourishes,
– where nature is welcome,
– where little people and little needs
– where justice speaks loudly,
– where in a wilderness of idolatrous
destruction the great voice of God still cries
out for Life.