A Journal for The Contemporary Church

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God’s Stumbler: On Being a Martyr in the World


The martyrs of the faith and charity reveal a dramatic narrative of Christian experience. Like Mary, the martyr’s soul magnifies God rejoicing in the glory of God’s salvation. Testifying to the Gospel, martyrs unearth the trauma of existence with the radiance and splendour of dying and rising with Christ. Equally, the Gospel calls the faithful to journey through the turbulence and stumbling of life towards the Kingdom of God. The Gospel life of the martyr provides an insight into the affectivity and otherness of Christian experience. For encountering people’s suffering, we stumble at the gravity of their pain and outrage, falling over and cutting ourselves upon their wounds. A martyr’s Christian experience teaches us at this humble and awkward descent to shed a little blood of compassion and become, to locate a metaphor, “God’s stumbler”.

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