Fr. James Martin on how to respond when anti-vaxxers die of COVID:
“The problem is that even a mild case of schadenfreude is the opposite of a ‘Christian value.’ Jesus asked us to pray for our enemies, not celebrate their misfortunes. He wanted us to care for the sick, not laugh at them. When Jesus was crucified alongside two thieves, he says to one of them, according to Luke’s Gospel, not ‘That’s what you get,’ but ‘Today you will be with me in paradise.’ Schadenfreude is not a Christian value. It’s not even a loosely moral value. …
“Indulged in regularly, schadenfreude ends up warping the soul. It robs us of empathy for those with whom we disagree. It lessens our compassion. To use some language from both the Old and New Testaments, it ‘hardens’ our hearts. No matter how much I disagree with anti-vaxxers, I know that schadenfreude over their deaths is a dead end.”
Been struggling with the schadenfreude compulsion throughout this pandemic, especially with all the anti-vaxxer and anti-masker noise out there. So glad that Fr. Martin says something about it in today’s New York Times.
I sense a link to today’s epistle reading here.