Peace! What connections to make here!
We honor the cross as the instrument of salvation, but have to remember that it originally was a sign of power: human power, coercive power--the Power of Rome to impose her will on the world and punish those who opposed that will. The cross was the call to obedience, but was only transformed by the true obedience of Love of Jesus Christ. And it remains the symbol of the presence of God in the midst of the evil we encounter in this world, and of our call to obey as Jesus did. Thus, the WTC, 9/11, calls us to two things: to believe God is still in a world where such evil (and others, as Darfur) exists, and to respond in obedience to the Gospel message. Someone sent me an email for 9/11 calling us not to forget, and to work so that "those who want to destroy us are...destroyed." Is that the message of the cross? Yet, today's feast of the Sorrowful Mother reminds us that the suffering caused by evil is not forgotten by God, and that the triumph of Good will wipe away all tears. It's not always easy to bring it all together, which is why God gave us Mary as our example. Mater Dolorosa, ora pro nobis!