FR. DAVID’S BLOG OF 4/10/2020 — What will it be like when we worship again together?
The other night, on a Zoom call with the group that has been studying the Book of Common Prayer during Lent, we spent a great deal of time discussing the shape of the weekly celebration of the Eucharist. It was a wonderful and rich conversation with these faithful followers of Jesus Christ. As we were sharing, we circled around to what it will be like when we are able to worship again together. We all agreed it will be an amazing and powerful celebration, not to mention one big homecoming! We are not there yet and I wish I could tell you that it will be soon but that is not up to me.
In the meantime, how do we celebrate Easter in the age of COVID-19? This is a question I have been pondering all week in my daily meditations after Morning Prayer.
I am tired and weary of the flood of emotions that wash over me on a daily basis. Sometimes I feel a sense of normal as I call you on the phone and hear that you are well. Other times I have a sense of despair when I hear about how many people have died or become sick as a result of the virus. I fall into bed exhausted each night. I am tired of feeling this way.
And yet, our faith teaches us that these expressions of lament and sorrow will lead us to Resurrection. Jesus from the cross shouted aloud, My God, My God, why have you forsaken me? We might feel that sense of abandonment today. And yet there a signs that, as a result of living at the time of a global pandemic, people around the world are practicing acts of kindness to their neighbors as well as people who are strangers.
Resurrection does happen in the midst of so much pain and death. So my friends, do not despair! Find little ways to lighten your soul during this time. Pick up the phone and call someone and tell them you have been thinking of them. Take time to take care of yourself by taking a walk or a nap. Be kind to yourself and be loving to the ones you love. These small ways will lead us to proclaim that the Lord, Has Risen Indeed, Alleluia!
Prayer for People Critically Ill or Facing Great Uncertainty
God of the present moment,
God who in Jesus stills the storm
and soothes the frantic heart;
bring hope and courage to all
who wait or work in uncertainty.
Bring hope that you will make them the equal
of whatever lies ahead.
Bring them courage to endure what cannot be avoided,
for your will is health and wholeness;
you are God, and we need you.
-Adapted from New Zealand Prayer Book, p. 765