Why It Is Important To Grieve on Good Friday
“One of the most traditional and popular devotions in the Christian world is the Stations of the Cross…every generation of Christians, driven by some instinct of faith, has tried to retrace the steps of Jesus to Calvary, discovering that he continues to journey with us in our own passion and way of the cross. ” -Father Virgilio Elizondo
I’ve been thinking today about this tradition within the Catholic church to retrace the passion of Jesus. In Destino, we have many Catholic students that will go to mass today and take part on this meaningful and beautiful experience. They will take time this Good Friday to grieve the death of Jesus and to grieve the fact that, as Elizondo writes, “suffering has not been erased, loneliness continues, and betrayal and abandonment of friends break my heart”.
I appreciate this about the Catholic faith, that they take today during Holy Week to pause and grieve before Easter Sunday. We in the Evangelical world can often rush past grief out of anxiety or fear of it, where as many of our Catholic brothers and sisters recognize the value and necessity of it in truly experiencing hope in the resurrection.
So today on Good Friday, I want to invite us to stop and to grieve with the saints as we think about the death of our Savior. Just as the quote from Elizondo illustrates, let us take time today to “mourn with those who mourn” knowing that the fullness of the Kingdom has not yet come. There is still injustice, pain, brokenness in our world, and it deserves our sorrow as we look to the cross that reflects the agony of our Savior.
In what ways can we be present this Good Friday in the realities of those around us that are suffering? While sorrow and loss may be common, that doesn’t make it normal. The world is not as it should be and grieving is our way of acknowledging that painful truth knowing our Savior intimately relates. Isn’t that ultimately what compassion means? To share in the pain of another? Let’s be people of compassion today agreeing with those who are hurting that the world has yet to be made new. Today let’s make space in our lives for grief knowing that Christ understands our suffering and also knowing that hope is coming.
photo courtesy: jam343