Well now…it’s been a month since I posted. My goal of twice monthly does not seem to be happening as I hoped. However, given the imposed hibernation due to the CoVID19 pandemic, that might change.
Like many of you, I am working from home these days. At first, this was fun. I’m not at any loss for keeping busy online, but I really miss my faith community and compadres.
Like many of you, I’m feeling some anxiety about the “what’s next-ness” of this entire experience. Each night, I go to bed exhausted emotionally. I wake up and realize it’s Ground Hog Day, again. Same situation yet new awfulness.
Like many of you, I am waiting for the next shoe to drop. So many of our very active parishioners are elderly. Who will contract this illness? Who will die from it? How will we do those funerals justice? What about our families? Who will be directly affected by the sickness?
Like many of you, I feel the pinch of panic each time I hear of another set of services close down.
Like many of you, I worry about cash flow, job security, retirement funds, day to day and medical expenses.
And it is Lent. How do we practice prayer as we hoped to?
We cannot. That is the simple answer. It seems we need to set aside expectations on every level and live into this new moment. We are giving up Lent this Lent.
But maybe we can reimagine this season with our traditions of prayer, almsgiving and fasting:
- We can always pray. That prayer time we never seem to get is actually falling right into our arms. Today I found time to journal, to breathe and to sit in quiet. Wow! That was lovely.
- We can still give alms. Now is a great time to give electronically, to clean out our closets and drawers, to think about what someone else might be needing. It is a good time to divest and to consider how we spend and use for this is a time that will squeeze everyone.
- We can still fast. We have imposed upon us a fast from Lent gatherings, Fish Fries, communal prayer services and Sunday Eucharist. This fast feels harsh but might be cleansing as we creatively seek new ways to pray as community. It can also create within us a new hunger for celebrating, receiving and becoming Eucharist.
And who knows? We may be fasting from Easter as well. Things are changing minute by minute. This is new territory for every person on this earth. Talk about a moment for solidarity!
Let us keep each other in thought and in prayer.