Two Trials

When they had made the prisoners stand in their midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?” – Acts of the Apostles 4:7

They tried two people for healing.
They tried one man for killing.

They tried two people who had offered new life.
They tried one man for rebuffing offers of aid.

The two people spoke for themselves.
The one man held his silence.

The two people declared a new truth.
The one man maintained an old, old lie.

The two people walked away free.
The one man was imprisoned in his guilt.


One of the two faced other trials.
He died unjustly upside-down on a cross.

How many trials will defend the old, old lie?
How many will die, their lives uncherished?

In sorrow for the death of George Floyd.

A poem/prayer based on Acts 4:5-12, the Revised Common Lectionary First Reading for Year B, Fourth Sunday of Easter.

The image is a detail from Healing of the Cripple and the Raising of Tabitha by Masolino da Panicale (1424). Photo and crop: Cappella_brancacci, Guarigione_dello_storpio_e_resurrezione_di_Tabita(restaurato),Masolino.jpg: see filename or categoryderivative work: StAnselm (talk) – Cappella_brancacci,_Guarigione_dello_storpio_e_resurrezione_di_Tabita(restaurato),_Masolino.jpg, Public Domain,

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