In three days the film, Oppenheimer, will be released. I, like many others, concerned with war and violence, with peace and justice, with imposed human suffering and Christianity’s place in all this, have over the decade taken in much information and much misinformation regarding the first detonation of an Atomic Bomb, its implication and consequences.
In 1990 a group of us sensing, that the multilayered ruinous effects of the choice to build such a weapon were on a course to outrun anything the human brain could conceive, decided to begin to pray for twenty-four hours on each July 16 at Trinity Site in the New Mexico desert, the location the first atomic explosion. Our prayer was for the miraculous power of God to bestow on all humanity today and tomorrow the grace of forgiveness for the evil of creating the Atomic Bomb and for protection from the multiplicity of evils in which it has immersed humanity. We pray with Mary, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, whose universal feast day is July 16 and at whose request Jesus performed His first miracle in the Gospels. This we have done uninterruptedly each July 16th, along with many others, for the last thirty-four years.
Today, I am forwarding to you the audio of the opening short spiritual reflection at this year’s Prayer Vigil at Trinity Site on the Atomic Bomb explosion of July 16, 1945. Tomorrow I will send this year’s closing reflection. Perhaps something in either or both can serve as a point of dialogue with and evaluation of the film Oppenheimer.