Aisle Cirineos

You and I, at this time, are called to carry Christ through the corridors of our homes, to carry that weight without recognition, without candles or incense... The procession goes, as never before, inside.

March 25, 2021-Reading time: 2 minutes

You've probably seen that snapshot. It was taken last year by Alessandro Garofalo, a Reuters photographer. In it, two men carry an image of Christ Crucified through the interior of a hallway. It happened in Taranto, Italy. There, Amedeo Basile, the priest of the church of Santa Maria Addolorata, in the hardest moment of the confinement, carried the images of Christ and of Saint Mary Sorrowful and, together with his faithful leaning out of the balconies, they prayed the Stations of the Cross at sunset on Good Friday. 

That photo (look it up if you can!) when the image was being moved to its original location, it went around the world and was chosen among the prestigious "Photos of the Year". Perhaps because it did not just immortalize a particular moment in a particular part of the world; that image was the "picture of the world" at that moment: the world that encountered the cross, the uncertainty, the weakness, inside its home.

You and I, at this time, are called to carry Christ through the aisles of our homes, to carry that weight without recognition, without candles, without incense... The procession goes, as never before, inside. The image itself contains all the strength of salvation. That of Christ-God who allows himself to be carried to the Cross for you and for me, that of Christ, perfect Man, who cannot bear the weight of the wood and who asks man for help to save him... 

Those modern-day Cyrenians with jeans and tattoos, who help Christ reach out to all men, who feel awkward before the dimensions of the wood, who know they are weak and fearful before pain and suffering, those useless ones, are you and me: the nothingness that God uses to make redemption, also, or perhaps especially, in times of pandemic.

Now that the time is approaching to carry the cross, to carry it through the corridors of the house, of the hospital, often without help, we have the best moment to pray about this choice of God with us. Chosen by chance, not by our merits, as the Cyrenians of that Jesus who passes through the depths of our intimacy.

Yes, this Holy Week, once again it is Christ who will come home. We will not be able to see him represented in the streets, in that plastic catechesis that every year so many Brotherhoods and Confraternities put in our cities, we will not see the tears of others, nor will we pray shoulder to shoulder with our brothers under a sack or in silence, unknown and ignored under a Nazarene mask.

We will do it again in the territory of our ordinary life, and this year it will not be by surprise. A few hours before the days of the Passion, I contemplate again that photo of Garofalo, to remember that, in the hope of meeting Christ again in the streets, the first procession, the first encounter with Christ, is walked in the corridors of our soul, alone, in silence, in the chosen confinement of prayer. 

The authorMaria José Atienza

Editor-in-Chief at Omnes. Degree in Communication, with more than 15 years of experience in Church communication. She has collaborated in media such as COPE or RNE.

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