Well! This is not the start we were expecting! Nearly two years ago, I shared some thoughts with you which I would like to reshare.
Resist panic. This is not to say there is no reason to be concerned, or that we should ignore the sound advice of medical professionals and public health experts. But panic and fear are not from God. Calm and hope are. And it is possible to respond to a crisis seriously and deliberately while maintaining an inner sense of calm and hope.
“Do not be afraid!,” as Jesus said many times.
Do not blame. Remember that Jesus was asked about a blind man: “Who sinned, that this man was born blind?” Jesus’ response: “No one” (Jn 9:2). Illness is not a punishment. So don’t blame and don’t hate.
Care for the sick. Do what you can to help others. Take the necessary precautions; don’t be reckless and don’t risk spreading the disease, but also don’t forget the fundamental Christian duty to help others. “I was sick, and you came to visit me,” said Jesus (Mt 25). And remember that Jesus lived during a time when people had no access to even the most rudimentary medical care. Part of the Christian tradition is caring for the sick.
And do not close your hearts to the poor who will suffer even more than the general population. Keep your heart open to all those in need.
Pray. For many people, not being able to attend Mass, removes one of the most consoling parts of their lives—the Mass and the Eucharist—and isolates them even more from the community at a time when they most need support. What can one do instead? You can pray on your own. When you do, remember that you’re still part of a community.
Trust that God is with you. Jesus, then, understands all the fears and worries that you have. Jesus understands you, not only because he is divine and understands all things but because he is human and experienced all things. Go to him in prayer. And trust that he hears you and is with you.
We will continue to move through this together, with God’s help.
Many things have been cancelled because of Covid-19. Love and kindness do not have to be two of them.
Blessings to you all
Assistant Principal Religious Identity and Mission