Tags

, , ,

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

“Why is it called Good Friday? What’s so good about it?”

All the years I taught Religious Education in public schools, I could lay bets on some student asking this question. By and large, the kids I taught were engaged with the stories of Jesus – enough to be dismayed and offended at the accounts of his arrest, trial and crucifixion. In this secular age, many had not come across these stories before.

In true pedagogic fashion, I always answered the question with a question. “It comes from when it was originally called God’s Friday? Why do you think this name was used?”

Discussions would arise that theologs might identify as atonement theorising. Did our classroom reflections reflect Anselm or Abelard, or even the more complex but apt Girard?

They ended up more ANZAC. As Easter almost always fell in close proximity to their ANZAC Day studies we segued to the oft appropriated quote “Greater love has no man than he lay down his life for his friends.” Students were surprised that these words are taken from John’s gospel and refer to the action of Jesus on this day.

It led to more visceral, reflective responses – more appropriate to this day than our poor efforts at theorising.