Archbishop Fulton Sheen wrote the book The Cross And The Beatitudes, Lessons on Love and Forgiveness. In it he offers us a poem by Harry Kemp. I was so taken by it this morning that I decided I would share it with you.
I saw the Conquerors riding by
With cruel lip and faces wan:
Musing on kingdoms sacked and burned
There rode the Mongol Genghis Khan;
And Alexander, like a God,
Who sought to weld the world in one;
And Caesar with his laurel wreath;
And leading, like a star the van,
Heedless of upstretched arm and groan,
Inscrutable Napoleon went
Dreaming of empire and alone...
Then all perished from the earth
As fleeting shadows from the glass,
And, conquering down the centuries,
Came Christ, the Swordless, on an ass.
The truth is there is no unity or empires, no success or wealth without Christ. There is no happiness in the pain of others. It cannot be found except in the salvation delivered to us on the Cross.