Barbara Holmes (an American Black activist and theologian) has said: “Even as a member of an oppressed community, you’re always an individual, but during a crisis of this magnitude, you do not have the luxury of responding as an individual. Suffering [of community in crisis] cannot be absorbed by individuals, no matter how tenuous and invisible the bonds of community are. Individuals cannot respond. You must do it as community, for safety, for comfort, and for survival.”
Richard Rohr: “I want to echo her final point here: We cannot face large-scale crises as individuals; we cannot carry the pain of this reality on our own, nor can we only look out for ourselves. The pain is communal and so too must be the response.”
WE ARE A GLOBAL COMMUNITY all facing this Coronavirus crisis together. When it is over, pray that we don’t go back to our old ways, but that we learn from and maintain many of the changes we have been forced to make now but were unwilling to make before, in order to save our planet. For example, air pollution has already been dramatically decreased because of the enforced restrictions.
When this is over, we must ensure our leaders work together selflessly, on behalf of our global community, to give our whole World, with its abundance of inter-dependent life, a better, more equal and secure future, even if it means accepting restrictions.
We WON’T GET A SECOND CHANCE – we have already caused so much damage to our planet and suffering, much of which is irreversible, and time is running out.
May God forgive us our foolish ways – and give us the will and strength and ingenuity to change those ways.
in purer lives your service find,
in deeper reverence praise.
Abide with me, fast falls the eventide
The darkness deepens Lord, with me abide
When other helpers fail and comforts flee
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day
Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away
Change and decay in all around I see
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness
Where is death’s sting?
Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies
Heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee
In life, in death, o Lord, abide with me.