The First Sunday of Lent is designated as "Solidarity Sunday". As we pray and reflect on God's Word this day, we think about what it means to be in solidarity with all peoples of the world and the Christian responsibilities that come with this awareness. It's not so long ago that things seemed to be very clearly defined. The geographic and social boundaries between humans were made relatively clear. Inequalities between the various social classes were unshakable. A few, the minority, had much to say and controlled almost everything. The others, the majority, lacked a voice, controlled little and suffered greatly. Structures and institutions perpetuated these established inequalities. Men and women, created in the image of God and called to live in equality were trapped by these structures that humiliated the vast majority of humanity.
These same structures exploited the good and bountiful creation that God intended for all. Today, communities are organizing themselves more and more in the ongoing pursuit of breaking bonds that keep the children of God from living freely and equally. With steadfast determination, they are calling for respect of their fundamental rights. Many want to participate in managing the common good, in developing the policies that directly affect their lives as citizens. Governments are increasingly compelled to create opportunities for dialogue, to take the voice of the people into account. Nothing can stand in the way of citizens taking their rightful place. At the risk of their own lives ordinary people defy the "merchants of death" who would threaten or starve the people. They seek nothing less than freedom for themselves and their children.
[Source: Sunday Bulletin of March 29, 2009; St. Paul Parish, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.]