Pentecost +19 - Year C
How lonely sits a city that once was full of forgiving and forgiven people. How like a bereaved spouse, enslaved by depression. Bitter tears are wept; no comfort is afforded. Friends have become enemies. The felt experience is that of exile, suffering, servitude, and sleepless stumbling.
Even the roads to the city mourn for there is no festival of forgiveness to draw people together. Priests falter, children grieve, it is bitterness all around. Transgressions remain transgressions and a multitude suffer for want of forgiveness.
Lament wherever you are, this fate does not wear out or run down - it waits for a first moment of fierce rectitude that excuses a next and next. Where preemptive mercy and forgiveness falter, self-inflicted disaster eventually destroys every empire built on market greed and self-righteous revenge.