This pandemic has a positive side for me because I have TIME; I have had time to ruminate what is important, listen to a recording of “Revelations of Divine Love” by Julian Norwich, to read all the “links” I want to, to look for materials and to have more contact with all the people in my life. To be attentive and try to figure out what transformations this special time is asking of me as a parish worker, as a member of several diocesan commissions, as a psychotherapist and most of all as a person.
One of the constants of this time has been the importance of doing with, for, in…love. This is not a new concept or conviction; I have been impressed in this time by how important it is. It doesn’t matter what I do, even if it is laying in the hammock to rest, love is the motivating factor or the rest isn’t the same. If I look for materials to share vía whatever medium, doing it with love has made it very clear which ones would be best. Giving, forgiving, watching, hearing, accompanying families of deceased and the gravely ill all changes from a conscience choice of loving. Loving the rest of creation brings my respect for each part of it up a notch.
Another thing that is clear to me is that we can’t go back to how it was. There have to be changes in how we have meetings, how we celebrate, how we meet and greet…because now we all have been changed in some way by this experience. Every single person has learned something more, changed in some way, caught on to something, etc. so why do we go back and do the same things in the same ways if we are not the same?
Lately we have had a lot of deaths in this town and diocese, in our parish; some persons were better known and others less so but each one has left a hole in the heart of others. The customs here normally include a lot of accompaniment in the moment and immediately afterward; that has not been possible in these moments for different reasons. I think we need to do some collective mourning, take the time to recognize we have all been touched and that mourning is a collective act because death has been a collective act, it is a common factor. Mourn people lost above all, but also mourn moments lost, customs left behind. I kind of think that only mourning collectively will allow us to move on collectively and that is the only way to move on. We’ve all lived through this, why not all move on together?