Tonight it seems that the world is a bad old place, I’ve just watched a short report on the way the indigenous people of Canada were treated by their government (British) and by the church (Catholic). There were old photos of a classroom of boys and girls, all staring at the camera, wide eyed, and the voice-over informed us that these First Nations children were taken from their homes, forbidden to speak their own language or to even refer to their families, half starved, and often abused. In the name of civilisation and in the name of Christianity.
What judgment there will be for those who did this.
I can’t get the picture of those children out of my mind. And it’s redolent of so many raped cultures, so many broken childhoods, so much harm done not just by the British but by all ‘religious’ institutions everywhere, from Spanish Catholics to British Protestants, Chinese Communists, Islam… all those who claim to speak on behalf of God.
No wonder the world is in a mess, no wonder sin is rife, when the world is full of damaged people, adults robbed of their childhoods, turned against God, actually lied to about God. And it’s not only the colonisation of the world that does the harm, of course, it’s us. Everyone. It’s society. It’s family breakdown. It’s immorality. It’s self. It’s lack of God.
I can’t get those shocked little faces out of my mind. Shocked, frozen, wounded little faces. How can God forgive us?
How many million children are there in the world right now, living loveless lives, lives that will scar them and limit their potential, cripple them emotionally? Shall we pray for them tonight?
Let’s pray for them tonight, and for all the adults who walk around day in and day out, carrying the hurts and wounds of their lost childhoods. Let’s pray that their pain will be eased, that they will find peace and joy, and that they will be able to offer to others what has been withheld from them. Love. Care. Christ. Pray that the cycle of lovelessness will be broken. For pity’s sake.
If Jesus is love and joy, is He also pity? I think so. I feel His pity. Strong , determined, powerful pity. Pity that can change lives.
Will you pray with me?