We are going through an unprecedented global predicament today. Each one of us and the entire world is affected by the coronavirus pandemic; our economy, our families, communities and our entire way of life are adversely affected. We have witnessed so much of suffering and pain caused due to the pandemic in our world. I am confident you have done all you can to reach out to the poor and needy in your vicinity during these days of uncertainty. Stephen Grellet says, “I shall pass through this life but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” The global pandemic Covid-19 shows that we are not separate from one another, even though we are living apart. We all have the responsibility to exercise compassion and lend a helping hand to the needy.
The experience of joy is the greatest reward for acts of loving service. There is an unexplainable feeing of fulfilment in knowing that your life had become useful by serving the less privileged. Jesus says in Luke 6:38 “Give and there will be gifts for you: a full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be poured into your lap.” Let us remember with gratitude and pray for all brave hearts who are selflessly giving their time and energy and are working tirelessly putting at risk their own life, all the volunteers, health professionals all over the world. Pope Francis, the head of the Catholic Church says, “let us not think only of our interests, our vested interests. Let us welcome this time of trial as an opportunity to prepare for our collective future for all without discarding anyone, because without an all-embracing vision, there will be no future for anyone.”
As the saying goes, a crisis is not only a time of danger- it is also a time of opportunity and a time for change. While our students who are digital natives have adapted to the ‘new normal’ of teaching and learning on the digital platform, the adults are getting acclimatised to conducting meetings online and working from home.
We cannot be sure what will happen next and how long this ‘new normal’ will continue. We hope for the best and prepare ourselves to accept changes that it may bring in every sphere of life – a change to be more human and humane.
“A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle
of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if humankind is to survive.” – Albert Einstein
We learn countless life lessons every day and all the time. The way we live our life depends on the choices we make in life. We have a choice – how to accept life, how we should live our lives and how we should respond in life. Focus your attention on the brighter side of life. Believe in God and believe in the strength within you.
Let the magnanimity of human spirit shine bright through your acts of kindness and compassion.
May this crisis be an invitation to a new beginning and a new life. Thank you
Sr. Mary Chetana, SND