Sunday, December 29, 2019

Off the train, get off!

Blessed Franz Jagerstaater

Below is an excerpt from Daniel Berrigan's meditation -- Meditation on a Martyr, in Tribute to Franz Jagerstatter -- on the occasion of Jagerstaater's Beatification in 2007. 

Read the whole thing HERE

When asked how he could resist Hitler when his own bishops were telling him not to, Jagerstaater said that "they had not been give the grace to see ... "

Was he right in refusing to board the train, and others, who consented and climbed aboard, desperately wrong ? 
Maybe. But this is cold comfort, this proving something, 
he the winner, they the losers. 
Let us say rather, some of the passengers, since his death have undergone a change of heart, stepped down from this train. 
They have come on an insight, not a comforting one, but salutary. The quality of his Christianity; and their own. 
The difference; but also, through him, the possibility.  
The possibility of - faith. Bedrock. Faith in the living God. 
And of necessity; no more faith placed in the idolatrous state, the hideous 'fatherland', the 'volk'.   
That ragged solitary figure trudging alongside the train -he beckons them. 
Off the train, get off !   

To speak of today; it is no longer Hitler's death train we ride, the train of the living dead. Or is it ? 
It is. The same train. Only, if possible (it is possible), longer, faster, cheaper. On schedule, every hour on the hour, speedy and cheap and - unimaginally lethal. An image of life in the world. A ghost train still bound, mad as march weather, for hell. On earth.

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