When Bishops Traveled to Syria…

in the past it was hardly newsworthy, a photo op, a chance to meet family or visit holy places, perhaps a meeting or two. But now we know, now we’ve learned to hold our breath.

Our hope is for something holy, Bishops in prayer seeking out the Holy Spirit to guide them as they care for the Church. We would like to believe they are in monasteries, prayer rope in hand, alone with God and asking Him “What will you have us to do…?” Then coming together they would say “It’s seems good to the Holy Spirit and good to us…”

Perhaps at some time in the past this was true. Now, however, what happens on the Street Called Straight is known on main street in the blink of an eye. Even the veil of Arabic is no protection. We used to see only the sausage, and now we see how its made and we’re losing our taste for it. We get inklings that these Synods in far away lands are less about piety and more about trade, barter, and the trappings of power. The image of holiness is fading from view and we wonder, are the people calling us to life in the Kingdom doing so themselves?

I hate feeling that way. I expect better of myself but it just doesn’t go away. Something is wrong, perhaps terribly wrong. What a horrible thing to contemplate, the sheep having to protect themselves from the shepherds and the fold itself being not a refuge, but a cage.

And all we can do, for now, is wait.


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