[Interviewer]This is an appalling tragedy, the UN are saying that it may well be the biggest natural disaster in history. How do we reconcile our faith with this terrible tragedy on this scale?
ABY: I think it is not an easy thing to reconcile, the heart of it because it is just so so awful and the people suffering terribly. We tend to look for answers actually where there are sometimes no answers.
I think the reconciliation for me comes in my understanding of God as I see him in Jesus Christ. A God who is almighty and powerful is born like a little baby, grows up and is crucified, doing for us that which we can not do for ourselves. On the cross you hear him say "My God, my God why have you forsaken me?" But that's not the end. He rises from death, conquering evil and death and pointing out to us that actually in the end it is life in God which matters. So a God who has becomes like one of us, dies, rises, sends his Spirit, that we may be forgiven for the wrongs we have done in the past, and given new life in the present and hope for the future.
That kind of a God is neither to be seen as the sort of grand puppet master who just pulls pulleys nor is he a Dr Who, or a Wonderwoman or Superman but actually a God who is there with us. Rabbi Hugo Gryn was a survivor of the Holocaust and was asked the same question "Where was God when the Jews were being gassed? Why did he allow it to happen?" and Rabbi Hugo Gryn said "God in those gas chambers was being violated and blasphemed". That God is always around us, with us, suffering with us and giving us the hope that in tragedy and death and things we can't explain - in the end these things are not the end.
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