There must justice for all or there is justice for no one.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


Each time we look upon the poor, on the farm workers who harvest the coffee, the sugarcane, or the cotton, or the farmer who joins the caravan of workers looking to earn their savings for the year…remember there is the face of Christ.

The face of Christ is among the sacks and baskets of the farm worker; the face of Christ is among those who are tortured and mistreated in the prisons; the face of Christ is dying of hunger in the children who have nothing to eat; the face of Christ is in the poor who ask the church for their voices to be heard. How can the church deny this request when it is Christ who is telling us to speak for Him?

Oscar Romero, archbishop of San Salvador martyred in 1980.

I see that Newt is trying to wrap himself in the mantle of Saint Ronnie. Let's remember some of the costs of our war on communism. In El Salvador alone, more than seventy thousand people were killed from the late seventies until some kind of peace accord was reached in the early nineties. Over seventy thousand in a country with just over five million population. The victims included farmers, women, children, priests, nuns and an archbishop.

I’d love to get the chance to read this in the presence of our God fearing Republican candidates and ask them what they were doing to fulfill Romero’s words.

This is the third Sunday of Advent. As my reading leads me past the Quakers and into Liberation theology I find the Christmas ads painfully jarring.

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Thomas Merton was very vocal, in print, in his opposition to the Viet Nam War in the years before his death. As vocal as a monk under a vow of silence could be, anyway. He believed that ending the draft would reduce the temptation to get involved in more Viet Nams.

I wonder what he'd make of our all "volunteer" military. If we don't have enough personnel in uniform to do the job; we outsource it. Usually at a much higher cost than we'd pay if we had military personnel to do the jobs.

Reminds me of the paintings of the flagellants who crisscrossed Europe after the plague years in the fourteenth century. Back and forth, back and forth led by skeletal figures offering some sort of redemption.

What redemption will we find as our voluntary wars wind down? We can be free or we can be safe. Sometimes both, but never for very long.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Our Advent wreath.