In this painful time in the life of the Church, we are each deeply affected by the unfolding revelations of sexual abuse by members of the clergy, and cover-ups or lack of prompt action by those who should have stopped it. It is Christ who suffers among us: in our survivors, our scandalized, our vulnerable, our children, those whose faith has been shattered. Even while we acknowledge what has happened, it can be difficult to accept or grasp the scope of the abuse and the depth of suffering of the victims; it can be even more challenging to know how to respond. Yet it is crucial that we do so.
The best initial response to crisis that we can make is an act of faith in Christ. To entrust this heartbreaking situation and the entire Church to our gentle and powerful Savior is one of the greatest acts of faith we can make. And this act opens us to take an active part in the healing Christ wants to bring through us.
Each of us shares personally in the mission of Christ. We are called to bring healing to the wounded, protection to the vulnerable, justice to victims, wisdom and insight to leaders, encouragement to the discouraged, strength to the overburdened. We can fulfil our unique, God-given purpose by seeing with the eyes of Christ, listening with his heart, and acting as he would. It is in this way that we can become Christ's healing presence in our broken world.
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