|We are deeply moved when we meditate on the unfair and painful passion and death of Jesus on the cross. Those hours of intense physical and spiritual suffering, feeling abandoned by everyone, even by his Father, which we remember every year during Holy Week, make us reflect on the good and evil, love and hate in our own lives, in our communities, and in the world. In the case of Jesus, what is striking is that he voluntarily submitted to this affliction out of love for his Father and for all of us. In solidarity with human beings, Jesus gave his life for the salvation of all creation. And he left us the most sublime witnessing of human love. And love prevailed over hate, life over death. Love has the last word because God is love. This is the message of hope that the risen Jesus Christ gives us, and that allows us to cope with our tribulations in this life.
The history of the young republic of South Sudan resembles the passion and death on the cross of Jesus. So many people have been crucified due to tribal struggles for the hegemony of power and the use of natural resources. So many have had to flee the country and live in refugee camps in neighboring countries. So many religious have been martyred in South Sudan. Peace, justice, forgiveness, and reconciliation are necessary in this young country. And only love can lead this process that in the eyes of human beings seems impossible to achieve, but for God everything is possible. Solidarity with South Sudan, through the fraternal and committed witnessing of its 19 members from different congregations and countries distributed in the 4 communities: Riimenze, Yambio, Wau, y Kit; and the collaboration of more than 260 congregations, and the lay people in South Sudan and in Rome, is bearing witness to love and giving hope to the people of South Sudan.
I would like to end this Easter message quoting part of the homily of Pope Francis in Juba during his apostolic journey to South Sudan:
“Yes, Paul’s concern is also mine, as I gather here with you in the name of Jesus Christ, the God of love, the God who achieved peace through his cross; Jesus, the God crucified for us all; Jesus, crucified in those who suffer; Jesus, crucified in the lives of so many of you, in so many people in this country; Jesus, the risen Lord, the victor over evil and death. I have come here to proclaim him and to confirm you in him, for the message of Christ is a message of hope. Jesus knows your anguish and the hope you bear in your hearts, the joys and struggles that mark your lives, the darkness that assails you and the faith that, like a song in the night, you raise to heaven. Jesus knows you and loves you. If we remain in him, we must never fear, because for us too, every cross will turn into a resurrection, every sadness into hope, and every lament into dancing”.
We wish all of our readers much Easter Joy and Peace.
“Christ is Risen. Christ is Risen Indeed.”
Br Carlos Josè Ferrada Montero, SVD
Solidarity Board Member
03 April 2023
Br. Carlos Josè Ferrada Montero, SVD
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