So, where is that action? Are we going to shrug our shoulders and say “it’s their problem” or “it’s complicated” or “the rebels are worse than Assad”? We were able to say that before and hide in the thicket of politics.
But the courage of a modern martyr, a man who stared down his persecutors and made the supreme sacrifice, should shame us into action, even if that action is simply to scream out “STOP!” It’s a start.
My church urges forgiveness, but I cannot forgive the assassination of an elderly Jesuit. What I can do is ask all of you, on this very special Friday, to remember his name and realize that the people of Syria are no different than the people on our buses, in our schools and at our tables. If we can remember that, and understand that Father van der Lugt stood up for their humanity in the face of inhumanity, his martyrdom will not have been in vain.
Christine M. Flowers is a lawyer and columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News. Readers may send her email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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