Pope Francis describes the present moment as a “propitious time” to be open to the Spirit, who can “inspire us with a new imagination of what is possible.”
A Faith Response to the Coronavirus
APRIL 18, 2020
If you’re anything like most of us, the coronavirus situation
has thrown you for a big loop. Our children are still out of school, organized sports, and other activities. A lot of things feel out of whack. We are home and not involved in our regular activities. Meanwhile, we are trying to answer their difficult questions, keep our kitchen stocked, and juggle working from home. You may well have greater challenges than us, such as losing work, struggling to find childcare, or dealing with illness yourself.
We certainly don’t have all the answers for how to navigate this difficult time, but we do want to share some thoughts and insights that we have found and received from others,
much from our Catholic faith tradition. We also wanted to offer a “place” where you can look for ideas to use at home, read relevant articles, watch helful videos, and grow in your faith when we can not be together physically. This is not the first time that people of faith have faced a crisis, and it will not be the last. We need to remember that we have God and each other to sustain us through difficult times.
A good starting point for all of us is to remember that the most repeated phrase in the Bible is “Do not be afraid!” or “Have no fear!” God probably sends us this message so frequently because fear is such a big part of human nature. Fear can alert us to dangers in our lives to keep us safe, but fear can also lead us astray and make us feel alone. You are not alone. We are in this togegther, and we are together in the Holy Spirit. We are Presentation! And we are strong! Don’t forget to check the parish website also for so many ways to pray with us and connect.
Pope Francis addressed the crisis in an address a few weeks ago and you can view His beautiful address below.
“Our God is near and asks us to be near to one another, not to distance ourselves. Right now, in this pandemic crisis, that we are living through this nearness asks to be manifested more, to be made more visible. Perhaps we cannot draw near physically to others for fear of contagion; but we can reawaken in ourselves a habit of drawing near to others through prayer, mutual help and many other ways of nearness. Why do we need to be near one another? Because our God is near to us.” – Pope Francis
ARTICLES and REFLECTIONS
Article: Pope Francis shares his vision for Covid-19 aftermath(America Magazine)
Article: Five Tips for Finding God Amidst the Corona Virus Crisis – Dr Patrick Manning has been one of our well-liked guest Speakers for our Family Faith Program. Dr. Manning is Assistant Professor of Pastoral Theology, the Chair of the Department of Pastoral Theology at Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology at Seton Hall University. In his article he encourages us to look for unexpected ways God may be working during this crisis, to welcome this time as a time of Sabbath rest, to spend time with God in prayer, to refocus on is important in life, and to take time to connect more deeply with those in our lives.
Article: Talking with Kids about the Coronavirus(Focus on the Family)
Article: Educational Activities for Kids Stuck at Home(Focus on the Family)
Article: We Must not Allow the Coronavirus rob us of our Humanity (America Magazine)
Article: ‘WHERE IS GOD RIGHT NOW?’ HOW IMAGINATION CAN AID OUR FAITH IN QUARANTINE – He also suggested things which incorporate your senses, like burning incense, listening to hymns or sacred music, and meditating on a piece of art. “Whatever would help your bodily senses bring back happy memories of being a church together, of encountering God, of increasing hope and charity, I think those are wonderful things to incorporate now,” he said.
WEBPAGE: COVID-19 GUIDE for PARENTS
Mental Health Resources
WEBINARS and VIDEOS
“An emergency like Covid-19 is overcome in the first place by the antibodies of solidarity.” – Pope Francis
Renew Prayer Amid a Pandemic
Lord Jesus Christ, we pray for your healing touch during this pandemic. We ask you to accompany those in our small groups,
our parishes, our communities, our nation,
and throughout the world who are impacted
by the virus through infection, economic loss,
Renew our faith in your promise to be with us always.
Keep us mindful, Lord, that we share in this crisis as a family and that whatever we are asked to do to prevent the spread of infection, we do for the good of all.
May we be patient and generous with each other, following your example, you who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.