To mount the cross of courage this EasterThursday, April 01, 2021
This Easter season will, once again, mark the commemoration of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, the Christ, and there is hardly a better time to reflect on the state of nation and the quality of our individual and collective humanity.
It will be the second consecutive Easter, though worse than the first, in which the churches will not be packed to overflowing in this great tradition that we had come to expect prior to 2020 and the emergence of the accursed novel coronavirus pandemic.
But what remains true is that this Easter, too, will find us grappling with the self-same problems of so many before. Nine years ago, under this very title, we wrote of the horrendous stories of sexual abuse of our nation's women and children by brutish monsters. That has hardly changed.
As then, we continue to fret that Jamaicans have become numb to the violence and cruelty meted out daily to each other, and that nothing could be too gruesome, or too chilling, to give some in our populace pause.
Let us, this Easter, act as a nation in mounting the cross of courage, not only in praying in the churches or online, but in taking a stand against the dreadful wrongs that beset our country.
We can be better. Hardships there are, but the land is green and the sun shineth. The battle to fix the economy is uphill, but many of the things that need fixing are not about money. Certainly, we don't show enough care for each other.
It is the sense of sacrifice, for the good of all, that is going to make the difference in this our island home. The uncanny thing about the crucifixion and resurrection is that one does not have to be a Christian — and indeed many do not embrace the Easter story — to appreciate the concept of giving one's life for another — the ultimate sacrifice that symbolises the love and value in which someone is held.
If the crucifixion offers us nothing else, it is the greatest story, perhaps, of courage on a cross. And that courage, somehow, needs to be summoned in Jamaica at this time. There is no doubt that the most urgent items for fixing are still crime, health, and education — all of which are depending on an improved economy.
When we pray, let us also focus on the over 586 Jamaicans who have died by the novel coronavirus and the loved ones left behind to mourn their tragic loss. In this regard, it is also necessary to pray for those caught in vaccine hesitancy which the World Health Organization linked in 2019 to a 30 per cent rise in global cases of measles.
A recent study in The Lancet journal noted the powerful role that social media has played in boosting conspiracies around vaccinations to millions of people. Indeed, one cannot simply fight anti-vaccination theories with counter-arguments and evidence, because these theories are not being shared on an evidential basis.
So, while the crucifixion was not about money and worldly affairs per se, we can draw lessons of sacrifice in which, as a country, we look out for one another and do what is best to achieve the progress and prosperity which we all need desperately.
We wish all our valuable readers, advertisers, and sponsors a Happy and Holy Easter, hoping that we will all find it in us to mount the cross of courage.
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