The tiled roof of the old subway station gleams in the late afternoon sun. This station has been the centre of our small European village for as long as I can remember. Traffic has slowed in recent years. The economy is bad. The young are moving on. This fading from view had impacted this space too. No longer crowded with hustle and bustle in all hours, a sense of life seems to have gone out of the old station. I am startled under my reverie by whispering in the corner. A young couple murmur to one another. I look interested. Tear after tear chase down the cheeks of the young woman, clearly in distress. The young man, gentle in appearance reaches out a hand softly, tracing their tracks on her cheek. I learn forward in spite of myself. I squint, there’s not much I can see either. And then, as quickly as they come, they are gone, arm in arm – troubles while not suspended eased by gentleness of the day. A faded subway station still home to life, if at a different pace.
In a secular age, there is a push to strip the public square of all signs of faith. But freedom of religion and freedom of expression are the bare basics for a people to call themselves free. Convivium is a voice for the rightful role of faith and for people of faith in our pluralistic society.