Standing as a Witness
Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary, the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home. —John 19:25-27
Jesus’ Passion and death are still playing out in our world today. Two thousand years after Jesus suffered in that way, innocent people in 2021 are still sometimes arrested and unfairly convicted. Some people in power allow others to do violence in the name of law and order, just as Pontius Pilate did. Some people deny their connections with friends out of fear for their own safety. Law enforcement officers sometimes strike, mock, or even kill those in their custody.
Amidst the terror of these modern-day Passions stand other people — like the women at the foot of the cross — who are faithful witnesses to those in pain and stand willing to care for the bereaved.
FOR REFLECTION: When you have experienced a personal “passion,” who stood by you as a witness and to offer compassion? To whom might God be calling you to stand alongside in their pain now?