• Michael Haldas

Coronavirus


“No matter what challenges we face, including sickness and death and inconvenience, we may use them as points of entry into the blessedness of His Kingdom. Our present situation provides many opportunities to deny ourselves out of concern for protecting the health of our vulnerable neighbors. It calls us to die to our addiction to pleasure and self-interest for the sake of others. It reminds us that saving our lives in this world is an impossible goal, for the common ravages of disease and death will be with us until the coming fullness of the Reign of God. The current global pandemic reminds us that governments, healthcare systems, and economies, even at their best, are not our saviors and cannot work the fulfillment of the human person in God’s image and likeness. They cannot conquer the grave or bring us back to Paradise. Only our great High Priest, the God-Man, Who embraced personally the full consequences of our brokenness, could do that. His Kingdom remains not of this world, and we will not enter it unless we take up our own crosses as we die to the power of sin in our lives.” (Fr. Philip LeMasters)

“With the closure of public gatherings across the country, including the closure of many churches, we now have been given the opportunity to turn from all secular temptations, such as concerts, sporting events, bars and restaurants, movie houses, and all other kinds of secular distractions, and focus on our inner life. We now have the opportunity of rekindling our personal prayer lives, joining other family members in using our prayer books, lighting lampada and candles before our family icons, and building up the “domestic church.” (Abbot Tryphon)

“COVID-19, and the precautionary changes and disruptions it is bringing to many of us, is not a diversion from our Lent and our lives. It is our Lent. It is our lives. This is, for now, the arena we have been given in which to work out our salvation alongside and in community with one another. In other words, the ways we act toward our neighbor and the judgments we make of each other right now are not meaningless. How are we doing on that score, as Christians? As human beings? I’ll let those questions linger for each of us to consider.” (Nicole M. Roccas)

“In our current season of coronavirus, unexpected circumstances are the new normal. With our activities curtailed and millions of us under government orders to stay at home as much as possible, God is answering prayers in unforeseen—and often uncomfortable—ways. Sometimes we don’t even formulate our desires as prayers; they are mere wishes, thoughts that flit in and out of our consciousness. Do any of the following statements sound familiar? “I wish I had more time with my children.” “I’m tired of running around from one activity to another. Lord, deliver me from this rat race.” “I wonder what it would be like to have solitude and time for prayer.” And now, pandemic has brought these prayers of the heart to fruition. But not in ways we expected. I’m not suggesting that God sent a deadly, global virus to force people to spend quality time at home. I do not mean to be glib in the midst of widespread sickness, death, and financial crisis. What I am saying is: Here we are. How do we respond, personally, in our own corners of the world, to our own unexpected situations? Will we take the opportunity to seek God’s Kingdom, here and now, surrendering our circumstances back to Him as an offering of thanksgiving?” (Lynette Horner)

“The world is going mad around us. Who knew that it wouldn’t be the zombie apocalypse, but a virus with a mortality rate less than some flu epidemics? People are fighting in store aisles for toilet paper. Some lovely human beings are trying to financially capitalize on the sufferings of others by buying (and reselling) tens of thousands of bottles of hand sanitizer. And the best, culturally, that we seem to be able to come up with, is “social distancing. Worse than that is the decidedly mixed message coming from our churches. So much of this, as I’ve argued before, is part of the breakdown of our common Christian culture…we need more than community. We need communion. We need to reawaken the sense that we are a body that must exist as a body. And that body is only a body while we are in communion with each other and with God.” (Deacon Nicholas Kotar)

"Throughout history, societies have dealt regularly with plagues and epidemics. And even when they have not, the mortality rate has remained 100%. The current crisis clarifies our condition as those who remain subject to disease, death, and all the problems common to the children of Adam and Eve in this world.” (Fr. Philip LeMasters)

“…the shadow hanging over us–not COVID-19, not having to wash hands or call out the search party to find a single package of toilet paper. We forget it’s not really about any of this, what we are being asked to do or not do, but about the fact that we will one day die–really and truly. And we can change people’s minds, we can pretend our actions don’t matter, pretend we are immune to all this hype. But we will never be able to change our mortality. May we make the most of our time with one another. And may we, in the fear of God, with faith and love draw near.” (Nicole M. Roccas)

“So did God send COVID-19? God does not make people suffer. He does, however, allow suffering to happen so that we might repent, so that we might return to Him and see that it is Him we need and it is He Who is our only hope. Separating evil in this world from the demonic forces that move and shape it is something that Christians cannot do. And we know that God permits demons to run amok at times for two purposes — to bring justice to the wicked and to inspire repentance. And the latter often works to purify us as we look to Him. Repentance in the midst of suffering does not mean that we are saying God is punishing us. Repentance is about turning more to Christ and becoming more like Christ. And suffering often is the only way we can do that. And part of how we repent is to commit to helping those vulnerable in times like this. We have to be smart and do it well. But we have to do it. Because everything is spiritual. Nothing is a secular, material space into which the spiritual does not enter.” (Father Andrew Stephen Damick)

“This pandemic should be a reminder to all of us that we should be in prayer, seeking an end to the epidemic. This whole time of church closures must not be seen as based on fear, or a sign that the Church is betraying her people, but rather, a time for all of us to go deep within ourselves, worshiping before the Holy Trinity, pleading to God not only dispel the pandemic, but to heal the souls of people who have turned our sights to earthly pleasures, while distancing ourselves from the things of God.” (Abbot Tryphon)

“A Prayer for All - Lord Jesus Christ Son of God, have mercy on each of us; have mercy on the world; have mercy on those who have fallen asleep and their families; have mercy on those who are sick and their loved ones; have mercy on doctors, nurses, scientists, and all health care workers, and protect and keep them safe; have mercy on those who are not sick with the coronavirus and keep them well; have mercy on those who are fearful, anxious, depressed and given to panic, may they find peace in their spirit in you; have mercy on those who hoard and give them a spirit of sharing and buying only what they need; have mercy on our clergy and grant them wisdom to lead us spiritually according to your will; have mercy on the laity and guide them to find ways to connect deeper with you and each other in this time of social distancing; have mercy on both clergy and laity to support each other fully during this difficult time; have mercy on our world leaders and governments and bless them with wisdom to guide us rightly; and finally, have mercy on anyone omitted from this prayer due to human failing, and bless us all according to your good and perfect will amen. (Sacramental Living Ministries)

#FrPhilipLeMasters #NicoleMRoccas #FatherAndrewStephenDamick #AbbotTryphon #SacramentalLivingMinistries #LynetteHorner #DeaconNicholasKotar

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