Mark Shea is not someone I find myself agreeing with all the time but what I do find myself doing when I read his stuff is pausing and pondering what it is the man has to say.
He’s done it to me again:
The good news of the Catholic faith is that Christ has chosen to take upon himself the guilt and sin, not only for his own murder, but for the murder and suffering of those poor folks in Tuscon. The lunatic who pulled the trigger in Tuscon bears his responsibility for his act of pounding the nails through the hands and feet of Christ. But rather than making cynical political capital out of his act by blaming Rush Limbaugh or Sarah Palin, Lefties would be better employed contemplating their own contributions to the miasma of violent rhetoric they so swiftly blame on others. Likewise, rather than pretending that the doctrine of rugged individualism insulates them from the taint of participation in the fallen and violent race they too have helped to encourage, righties might rethink their own glorifications of violence.
Ultimately, the only person in this tragic affair who is without sin is Jesus Christ–and He became sin and chose to bear the guilt of Jared Loughner and the rest of us that we might become the righteousness of God.
Asking who bears the guilt for what happened on Tucson is another way of asking “What’s Wrong with the World?” Answer: I am. My dismissive and abusive tongue helped hell here. My flippancy and contempt helped damage respect for other people and encourage people like Loughner to embrace complete contempt. My anger at people helped encourage the Loughners of the world in theirs. My sins against Christian liberty will make it easier for those who seek to destroy that liberty to do so.
The doctrine of solidarity means not, “let’s be socialist” but that we are all in Adam (and Christians are in Christ) for good and for ill. My sins hurt you and your acts of obedience help me. For the love of God, may we stop the finger-pointing, forgive those who hypocritically accuse others, and pray.
Pondering it all prayerfully.