Let us walk through this unsettled time together.
If you are like me, you are watching coverage of the current health crisis at all hours of the day and night. One can hardly escape news reports, commentary on the new reports, medical information, political commentary…it is enough to drive one to distraction! Having been so driven, I have found myself taking advantage of the advice to limit the amount of time I devote to the news to a fraction of my previous consumption, and to find ways to use the saved time creatively.
One such creative use is to focus more intentionally on the readings for this Lenten Season. It is easy to forget the liturgical season when surrounded by the overwhelming reality of the health scare that is upon us. But, as Jesus has reminded us on many occasions in the Gospels, “Do not be afraid. I am with you always.” By immersing ourselves in the words of the liturgy, or in contemplative or meditative prayer, we can find ourselves comforted by the Word and the presence of God, and so face the reality we are in with equanimity, confident that our God goes before us.
There are many resources to consult, some mentioned below:
The readings for Masses can be found on the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ page, either in written or audio form:
Whichever of these you choose, or any of the multitude that are available online, you can pull yourself away from the media world that can consume your spirit, and instead, renew your mind and spirit with the eternal wisdom of the Lord.
The words of the 23rd psalm are most appropriate for this time:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures you let me graze;
beside restful waters you lead me;
you restore my soul…
Even when I walk through a dark valley,
I fear no evil for your are at my side;
Your rod and your staff give me courage.
Let us walk through this unsettled time together, doing what we must to protect ourselves, but then relying on the Lord to walk beside us and lead us through to the other side of it, where we once again can gather as a community and give thanks and praise to the One in Whom we live and move and have our being.