The foreign visitor

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In this acrostic verse Steve Shoemaker imagined Simon of Cyrene, the innocent foreign (Libyan) bystander conscripted to help carry Jesus’s cross. Jesus of Nazareth was found guilty of “subverting the nation and refusing to pay tribute to Caesar.”

SIMON OF CYRENE 

Since I was in Jerusalem for Passover,

I  bought nice gifts both for my wife and the two boys.

Money I had, position in Cyrene, power…

Only meaning was missing, reason for my days.

Now my bags are knocked down and a Roman soldier

Orders me to carry a young condemned man’s cross.

From deep within his eyes I see a place of peace.

Crying women followed us all along the road.

Years later I could still recall, he turns and says,

Remove your tears for me, there are for you ahead

Even worse times to come:  no men,  no pregnancies,

No children, no city–for battles, sieges, war

End families, prosperity, leave just the poor.

  • – Acrostic Verse  – Steve Shoemaker – Urbana, IL, April 22, 2012

Steve (1943-2016) continued the work of Simon of Cyrene. He lived his life on behalf of the poor. We’re missing him today.

  • Gordon C. Stewart, Chaska, MN, March 28, 2017.

Good Friday 2013

Today is Good Friday.

Two pieces enriched the silence today. The first arrived early this morning.

Testimony

In Mark, the earliest account, the name
is given of the man who from the crowd
was forced to lift and carry the crude wood
cross that some carpenter had made the same
day. Simon of Cyrene is named, and then
the names of his two sons–as if they were
still living and could testify that their
father was one of the witnesses when
Jesus was crucified. Women were named
who saw the body buried in the grave,
and later returned to the empty cave
and found the heavy round stone had been rolled
away. Joseph of Arimathea
had given his own family tomb away.

But you are skeptical and full of doubt
that Christ is risen–you should check it out.
See that his followers who ran away
now risk their own lives when they sing and pray.
His students now have students. Many saw
him after death. They live and testify.
His movement grows, and some react with awe
and pass the story on, still testify…

– Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL, Good Friday, 2013

The second arrived this afternoon.

Click HERE to read Dr. Matthew Boulton’s Good Friday reflection in the Indianapolis Star. Matthew carries on the story as President of Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, Indiana. Matt is the son of Wayne, my seminary roommate and best friend since 1964. “They live and testify. His movement grows, and some react with awe and pass the story on, still testify…”

The foreign visitor

Featured

In this acrostic verse Steve Shoemaker imagined Simon of Cyrene, the innocent foreign (Libyan) bystander conscripted to help carry Jesus’s cross. Jesus of Nazareth was found guilty of “subverting the nation and refusing to pay tribute to Caesar.”

SIMON OF CYRENE 

Since I was in Jerusalem for Passover,

I  bought nice gifts both for my wife and the two boys.

Money I had, position in Cyrene, power…

Only meaning was missing, reason for my days.

Now my bags are knocked down and a Roman soldier

Orders me to carry a young condemned man’s cross.

From deep within his eyes I see a place of peace.

Crying women followed us all along the road.

Years later I could still recall, he turns and says,

Remove your tears for me, there are for you ahead

Even worse times to come:  no men,  no pregnancies,

No children, no city–for battles, sieges, war

End families, prosperity, leave just the poor.

  • – Acrostic Verse  – Steve Shoemaker – Urbana, IL, April 22, 2012

Steve (1943-2016) continued the work of Simon of Cyrene. He lived his life on behalf of the poor. We’re missing him today.

  • Gordon C. Stewart, Chaska, MN, March 28, 2017.