I just finished reading At Play in the Lions’ Den: A Biography and Memoir of Daniel Berrigan by Jim Forest (Orbis Books, 2017). Daniel Berrigan, SJ has been a hero of mine for a long time because of his intrepid dedication to the cause of peace and non-violent resistance. Recalling his example reminded me about the importance of “showing up” to oppose whatever militates against the Gospel in our time. “Showing up” means acting even when it is inconvenient or frightening. Action on behalf of justice can be crushing if undertaken by one person, but a group can make it possible to be courageous and to persist when opposition is strong. Participating in communal action for justice can be truly joyous.
There’s another kind of showing up that is more muted but is an expression of the love and caring that we have for those who are near and dear to us. It is definitely a high value in the Sinsinawa community that we go the extra mile (often literally) to attend wakes and funerals of family members of our sisters, co-workers, students, and friends. We show up at celebratory times, too, to express appreciation and love for each other’s work and dedication.
This book reminded me of Fr. Samuel Mazzuchelli’s challenge that we go wherever the work is great and difficult, knowing that we will open the way for the Gospel with God’s help.
Where do you think Christians are called to show up at this moment in history?
Are you being called?
Erica Jordan OP