" The cross of Jesus absorbs all the world’s evil into itself. But we have to receive this gift from God. It’s got to land somewhere. That reconciling power can land in us. " Abbot Jeremy Driscoll Mount Angel Abbey
ST. BENEDICT — Americans ought to take a breath and stand silently for a moment in the face of current national crises, said the spiritual leader of Oregon’s Benedictine monks.

During a seven minute video recorded from a rooftop at Mount Angel Abbey in the Willamette River Valley, Abbot Jeremy Driscoll said the quiet would not be the silence of apathy, but a prayerful period to re-ceive God’s saving power and then discern a right path forward amid the coronavirus and racial tension.

“More than flinging words at the problem is necessary here: Some deep understanding,” Abbot Jeremy said, Bible in hand as birds flitted behind him.

In short video reflections recorded at Mount Angel Abbey during the pandemic, Abbot Jeremy offers monastic wisdom he hopes will be help-ful to society.

Admitting he and other monks feel sad, restless and helpless about the country’s problems, Abbot Jeremy explained that racial prejudice is un-acceptable and offends God.

In such a trial, silence serves as a space for prayer when people can understand that God deals with such problems through the cross.

“The cross of Jesus absorbs all the world’s evil into itself,” he said. “But we have to receive this gift from God. It’s got to land somewhere. That

reconciling power can land in us.”

Abbot Jeremy urged viewers to take a lesson from the biblical genre of lament and call out to God with their fears and tribulations. That will be a comfort and lead to compassion, he said.

“Let the love of Jesus land in us and radiate out into the world,” he ex-plained. “There are millions of us Christians in the USA. It ought to make a huge difference.”