“ Vox Victimarum vox dei: The cries of the victims are the voice of God. To the extent that these cries are not heard above the din of our political, cultural, economic, social and ecclesial celebrations or bickering, we have already begun a descent into hell”
(Bosch quoting Lamb)
What a profound statement! If we are not hearing the cries of the poor, perhaps we are not fully hearing the voice of God. Linked to this, if presence with the poor is presence with God then absence from the poor is also absence from God. Separation from God is the essence of hell. Perhaps a primary reason we have so many hells on earth is exactly because we have created homes, communities, cities and nations without the presence and guidance of God found in the voice of the marginalised.
The invitation has always been to lean into the voices of pain in both our history and the current reality shaped by that history. We have needed to listen deeply to the context for the invitation revealed in the wound in order to engage in the work of God in the world of brokenness.
It has followed then that an important question to ask was: “where is there pain?” Perhaps if we could find the pain and hear its cry, we could hear the whispering invitation of God to be involved in its salve.
The reality is that for many churches in the suburbs they have not heard the cries of the vulnerable among them. In South Africa’s unequal society, the rich and poor grow up alongside one another and the marginalised and vulnerable remain unseen.
A new question emerging is:
- How do we help the church in the suburbs see and hear the cries of the oppressed among them?
Lets then pray this prayer together