Holy Week is already drenched in blood. The bombing of Coptic churches in Alexandria and Tanta is a reminder that to follow Christ is to risk everything, even life itself. I little thought when I wrote yesterday that we must follow Christ wherever he leads that for some their following him would end in a hideously violent, undeserved death at the very moment they were recalling his Passion. It is still dangerous to be a Christian, still dangerous to try to bring about true justice in the world.
Today’s Mass readings remind us that the Suffering Servant is to bring true justice to the nations, but we know the way in which he will do that is through apparent failure and death, a senseless waste of life — just as the blood of those Coptic martyrs must seem a senseless waste to many. And, of course, it is senseless if we see it as no more than the snuffing out of life. We hold fast, however, to the knowledge that in Christ nothing is ever entirely senseless, nothing ever wasted. We do not understand but we trust. A nun at her profession sings, Suscipe me, Domine, secundum eloquium tuum, et vivam; et non confundas me in expectatione mea. ‘Receive me Lord, according to your word and I shall live; do not disappoint me in my hope.’ (Ps 118.116) Today I sing that verse for our Coptic brothers and sisters.
Note: there are several other posts on the readings of Monday of Holy Week. Please use the search box in the sidebar if interested.