What part of the path to God is the COVID-19 epidemic showing us?
The current experience of COVID -19 is showing us many things about ourselves and our world. In particular, I want to focus on how it is lighting up various aspects of our path to God and how, even in difficult times, there is consolation to be found.
First of all, it is showing us that we are one humanity. Every human being, every people, each culture that contributes to human diversity is part of this one, varied, rich and interdependent humanity.
It is showing us how overcoming a crisis is possible. It is possible when we become aware of the importance of looking after the Common Good and taking seriously our own individual responsibility. We can only live as one body. Separately, for each person or each people on their own, it is impossible.
It is showing us that there is no difference in age, race, religion or social status within our one humanity. Each and every one of us is part of it, no one is left out, no one of us can do without the others.
It is showing us that we want to walk together. We are all concerned, we help each other to overcome fears and anxieties. Each one of us is looking for a way to lend a hand, starting by putting what we ourselves want in second place and accepting the measures and sacrifices that allow us to contribute to the good of all.
It is showing us the competence and generosity of those who are in the front line, caring for those affected, seeking solutions or making difficult decisions for the good of all. It is showing us the sensitivity of so many people or organizations and the enormous reserve of solidarity that exists: in young people, in adults and in the elderly, in all corners of human society.
It is showing us the power of faith, the strong bonds that unite believers, the love of Jesus Christ that impels us, reconciles us and unites us. There are so many people praying together on social media. They want to profess their faith, that faith which they feel in the depths of their hearts and which they cannot keep to themselves.
I have been receiving information about the many creative initiatives that have been taken both in the provinces, regions, communities and apostolic works of the Society of Jesus… as well as in collaboration with others. I thank the Lord for all of this. I encourage you to continue looking for the best ways to be close to those in need, in order to continue to walk the common path together.
I join in the prayer of the whole body of the Society of Jesus, of the Catholic Church, of all Christian Churches, of other religions or beliefs and of all those who, with their attitude of solidarity, are looking for and are finding appropriate ways to continue to lend a hand.
We do not know how long this stretch of the road is or what will follow after. So, let us ask for light to see the way forward and the grace that we need to walk it as brothers and sisters, in solidarity with the whole of humanity and with the planet on which we live.
May the Lord bless us and keep us as we walk this journey together. AMEN