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Mercy… A Reflection

June 22, 2021

The above picture is from a small cemetery on The Trail of Tears near Mentone, Alabama. The story of our First Nation siblings is both tragic and hopeful. It is tragic in the sense that we who are a part of the Anglo/Spanish/French colonization of this land have much to atone for. It is hopeful in the sense that those of us who stole the land can confess our ancestors sin and make a difference.

If you look closely at the roots to the left of the picture (in the hole), do you see and hear what I see? I see and hear the voices of those who have lost so much… who had their land stolen from them… who have had their religion and culture stolen from them by the white people…

So where do we go from here? Can we possibly find a way forward? Perhaps in the darkness we can find the light of hope and mercy… perhaps we can find forgiveness and restoration… perhaps we can find within ourselves a sacred calling…

These words of Thomas Merton speak to my heart this night…

I am out of bed at two-fifteen in the morning, when the night is darkest and most silent… I find myself in the primordial lostness of night, solitude, forest, peace, a mind awake in the dark… Magna misericordia. In the formlessness of night and silence a word then pronounces itself: Mercy. (Day of a Stranger, p. 43)

May we find mercy and a way forward in the midst of this darkness…

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