Dear Friends in Christ,
A reminder . . .
I had planned to write a little about my few days in Idaho this week, but after seeing that Governor Inslee reduced the size of allowable gatherings due to the rise in COVID-19 cases, I thought I would take a different approach. However, notice he didn’t restrict religious gatherings in the phased reopening. Why? Well, I think in part it’s because churches, synagogues, and other houses of worship are doing an amazing job of reducing the risk of transmissions in their gatherings. At least, I think we are.
I will say this about my trip. Western Washington’s approach to the pandemic is a lot different from that of Idaho. They haven’t been impacted as much and therefore, precautions are not as great. I found this interesting. In addition to the different perceptions of the pandemic, I think it’s too bad that the whole thing is so politicized across the nation and the world. The loudest arguments, from those calling for very strict restrictions to those who think this is all a hoax, tend to drown out the reasonable, balanced approached that is so needed at this time. Who would have ever thought that basic science could be hijacked by both extremes for political gain rather than for the common good of our citizens? Where is our focus? Where is our leadership? It seems that common sense takes second place to complaining, arguing, and grumbling from all sides. All this reminds me of Matthew 24:37-38:
“In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man.”
Why are we as distracted as our ancestors?
Saint John Vianney once said,
“The eyes of the world see no further than this life, but the eyes of the Christian see deep into eternity.”
Too often we are too focused on the practicalities and nuances of this world. We argue and complain about everything. It’s time we see with the eyes of Christians. We need to look beyond the politics of the day to what is really important. However, faith and prayer are weak today. We put far too much importance on that which we or others can control. Rather, we need to raise our hearts to God our Father and seek His guidance and protection. Rather than grumble about wearing masks or complaining that this or that group I like can’t meet right now, why not offer that sacrifice to God and pray for an end to the pandemic; and pray for the recovery and healing of those who are sick. In these times we are called to sacrifice a little for the common good and focus our eyes on what really matters in the end: God’s redemption and our eternal life with Him. Remember, that comes for all of us, whether we are healthy or health compromised.
For now, there are simple, proven things we can all do to reduce the risk of giving or receiving the Coronavirus:
1. Wash your hands often
2. Don’t touch your face.
3. Social distance; don’t gather in large groups.
4. Wear a mask in public to protect others.
How simple this is. It’s for my good and the good of all. Let’s step out of the fray and step up to the plate by putting into practice our duty to love God with all our strength (and Him alone!) and to love our neighbor as ourself.
Fr. David Mulholland