God Where Are You?

God Where Are You?

Aleppo, Berlin, Ankara

Gedächtniskirche Berlin

To all the victims of terror, war and other forms of violence

The God I know
Rests in the shadow of my house.
Each day he begs a bit of rice
And even more, a gaze of love, a welcoming face.

The God I know was born on straw
And died on wood.
And since a certain Easter morning
Here and there wanders in the world,
Mingling with the anonymous crowd,
The unimportant, the undesirable.

I see him silhouetted in the neighbourhood streets.
He tries to disappear, barely lets himself be seen,
And nine times out of ten he isn't recognized…
The God I know is powerless, silent
Terribly embarrassing.
He keeps me from peaceful sleep.
He haunts my quiet nights.
He says he's hungry, thirsty, naked,
A stranger, a prisoner.

He yells from the gutter,
Moans in his abandonment, rejected.
Without shame he spreads out his fleshless bones, his broken body.
I thought I heard his voice the other day:

"I am still there, I've never left you.
Oh, do not let me die of hunger,
Do not let me spend another roofless night, without warmth.
Do not leave me under oppression,
Suffer injustice, take blows, be tortured.

I need you
Today, this evening, now!
I knock at the door and there is no answer.
It's cold, I'm alone, there's no one to help me
To get back up, to tend my wounds…"

The God I know is called Jesus Christ.
He rests in the shadow of my house…

Jacques Couture SJ (Madagascar 1986)

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