Outside the Gates

JESUS SUFFERED OUTSIDE THE CITY GATES  Hebrews 13:12-15–Holy Thursday/Good Friday

“Jesus suffered outside the city gate in order to sanctify the people by his own blood.  Let us then go to him outside the camp and bear the abuse he endured.  For here we have no lasting city, but we are looking for the city that is to come. Through him, then, let us continually offer a sacrifice of praise to God, that is the fruit of lips that confess his name” Hebrews 13:15-15.

Today after I prepared the meal, I celebrated the Eucharist with the food as the Body of Christ, and placed a pair socks on top of the food container and blessed them, they became the Eucharist for today as we passed out food on the Haight and Polk.  In each person there is the face of the broken body of Christ. 

Tomorrow as as process with the Stations of the Cross through the Tenderloin we remember the broken body of Christ.

We remember what Dorothy Day once said, that the “Church is both our holy mother and a whore.”   That is why we will love the church to our dying breath, we have been both a whore and the church, and we continue to be in our own brokenness. Christ calls us to look to him and try our best to be the holy mother to the world. 

Below is a poem that was written for the Stations, reminds all of us of the broken body of Christ in our midst. 


I wait,

And time passes by,

And all the riches of the world become nothing.

I gaze

Made silent by the sight

  Of people sleeping on the street,

  Lying in alleys, sleeping in the doorways with dirty blankets,

  No where to go to the bathroom or get medical treatment—

  In twenty first century America.

I watch,

As City workers throw tents and bedrolls into their trucks,

It is simply a job, without thought to the human being in front of them.

I gasp,

Still life lingers in his fragile broken form,

In the face of the mentally ill, the mother with

child wrapped in blankets in a door way, and the

elderly man sleeping under the bridge of Hwy. 101.

I flinch,

As blow by blow nails are driven deep through the

fine wood of the people who sit on the corner hollowed

eyed without belongings, a place to sleep, food or hope.

I stand

As he is lifted high, a shadow against the sky, a shadow

of the equality for all he has made visible.

I weep

As his cry echoes deep in my callused heart,

Callused  against the person without food, housing,

And health care sleeping outside my door.

I scream

As he tells me it is complete, finished, said, and done,

and death comes to our streets.

I fall as the light goes out in the faces around me—

as they say, “what’s the use”, it is done.

I kneel as world explode,

 as time ticks by,

What once seemed hopeful, has no hope.

I bow,

For part of me is dead, dead in the broken on the streets,

Kept forever on Calvary’s painful peak.

I wait,

At the foot of the cross to begin my journey home—

Home to where all are fed, clothed, housed, have health care.

I wait at the feet of the Crucified One.


Begins at San Francisco City Hall-Polk Street Side

Noon, March 25, 2016

Come Join Us–If you Have questions or Need Help With Location Call 415-305-2124

Fr. River Damien Sims

P.O.Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


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