Friday, April 3, 2015

Closing Prayer for the Kingdom (The Fifteenth Station of the Cross)

< Fourteenth Station of the Cross

Oh Lord, you taught us to resist Empire by living with confidence in the reign of God, but our hearts are turned by fair winds and vain promises. Sometimes we are crushed under the heels of Empire, and sometimes we aid in Empire’s oppression, whether by active participation or by silent assent. We are the ones who shout “Hosanna!” and we are the ones who cry, “Crucify him!”

In the dark illumination of the Via Dolorosa, we have seen ourselves. We have seen ourselves capitulating to Empire; we have seen ourselves facing sorrow and death. We have also seen Christ among the living and the dying. We have walked the path that separates the Way of Life from the way of death.

In the darkness that is Good Friday, we stop to experience the absence of your light. We dwell in the moment of death and non-being as though the light has gone out. It is only by knowing the magnitude of loss and the depth of sorrow that we can truly honor the Way of Life and the hope of God's reign in our hearts.

You taught us in Matthew 25 that a nation is to be judged not by victories over its enemies, but by how it treats the weakest within its borders. May we therefore set out to care for the sick, give purpose and rehabilitation to the prisoners, provide for the hungry, and make a way for the destitute that in doing so we may all share in the bounty and gladness of the reign of God. Teach us also to care for the good earth. May we come to see all creatures that dwell within this fragile home as integral parts of your wondrous creation. 

May we live with your confidence in the reign of God, even in the face of hardship and death.           
                                                                                                                                                                                     ~ CK

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                         From The Book of Common Prayer:
                         (just prior to the consecration of the bread and wine at the Lord’s Table)

Lord God of our Fathers: God of Abraham, Isaac, and
Jacob; God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ: Open our
eyes to see your hand at work in the world about us. Deliver
us from the presumption of coming to this Table for solace
only, and not for strength; for pardon only, and not for
renewal. Let the grace of this Holy Communion make us one
body, one spirit in Christ, that we may worthily serve the
world in his name.

Risen Lord, be known to us in the breaking of the Bread.

                                                                ( Eucharistic Prayer C)


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Note: For a meditation on Holy Week beginning with Holy Thursday, see Paschal Triduum: A Personal Journey


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