It didn’t seem so long ago she carried her baby to the
Temple, and an old man
prophesied, “A sword will piece your heart.”
She hadn’t known what sort of sword. There were all the little swords of childhood, watching and caring for the boy, losing and finding him. There was the sword of his leaving home, and the day he addressed the crowds: “These are my mother and brothers,” as if she hadn’t left everything to follow him too.
This sword was a soldier’s spear, piercing her dead son’s heart.
A mother shouldn’t have to watch her baby die.
John 1:29 “…Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”
Good Friday’s service is the long one. We stand and kneel and sit on cue, and pray for all times and all peoples.
The priest holds up the crucifix—“Behold the wood of the cross.” And all other symbols stay hid under their purple cloths—statues in mourning. The congregation marches forwards to bestow our reverent kisses, quickly wiped.
It must look strange—we fools for Christ; irrational kisses in remembrance of God’s salvation. I touch my lips to plastic, and my heart touches mystery.
Returning home we celebrate with hot cross buns, sweetness and spice, pleasure and pain together.