I’m learning something right now that is wildly hard. Obedience.
I will move forward in obedience.
This is the line from the song rattling around my head for the last few days. You know how someone half sings, half hums without quite having the words. Watching various social media channels over the last week, particularly in the last few days helped me understand why this particular line is bouncing inside my head. It’s not pretty, and it’s not easy.
We’ve known for a long time that there are underground Churches in countries where belief in Jesus as Lord is not permitted, with those believers being persecuted, and martyred for their Faith. It’s not pretty. We’ve also learned in great horror of the sins, the heartbreaking sins, the acts of abuse and violence. I read much of the report out of Pennsylvania and the horrific acts perpetrated against children. We’ve further learned of acts of spiritual abuse, violations of relationships and trust.
We have sinned. Our Fathers have sinned.
Rend my heart.
Right now we are in the midst of a quarantine as a result of an animal to human, mutating virus. This virus is transmitting rapidly. We all have family members and friends who are immuno-compromised in some way. Their susceptibility at such a high level that contracting the virus quite possibly means death for them. While I am home packing to move right now, I’m not going out more than necessary, and with one exception, I am not seeing people. Until mid-February I traveled throughout NY and NJ. I could, unwittingly, be a carrier of this virus.
The Eucharist means EVERYTHING to me
My return to the Catholic Faith had everything to do with the Eucharist, the Real Presence of Jesus, Body, Soul, and Divinity in the disguise of Bread and Wine. (John 6). Going to Mass has been daily at times, and at least weekly at times, there have been times when traveling or ill I’ve made a Spiritual Communion. My heart has ached in those moments. Because Jesus.
In Diocese after Diocese the Bishops have stopped the Public Celebration of the Mass. We gather together, often sitting close to people. We can transmit the virus, we can get the virus. You know, like a cold. Some will be able to fight it off, some won’t, some will die. Those deaths, that can easily be avoided.
I can not begin to imagine the Bishops having to make this decision. Each one prayerfully discerning, listening to the current CDC guidelines, hesitating to keep the faithful from our Well Spring of Life.
I choose to be obedient, and not whine, complain, or otherwise denigrate the Bishops decision in any way. I won’t make my way to a diocese that is still having the public Celebration of the Eucharist as my own Bishop has halted the public celebration. Since I’m not working I was going daily. I Miss JESUS. I miss being part of a community of people who declare and repent our sins, who listen to the Word of God, who express our Faith and then Receive the Eucharist, wholly, fully, completely Jesus. Totally completely fed.
So what am I doing? Practicing Lent through the full Sacrifice of not being able to receive Jesus. I’m intentionally praying more. I’m blogging a bit more (in between paperwork and the packing). I’m praying an intentional Rosary live (please comment with your prayer requests or email me terilucas at gmx dot com) on the Blessed is She Westchester social media page. Our Blessed is She group is going to have a virtual brunch on Saturday through an internet meeting opportunity. There are other components to this.
I’m going to encourage the difficult act of Obedience. I’m going to encourage staying home. Write letters, make phone calls. Send emails. Do some deep cleaning, make quilts or afghans for charity. Prepare food or go shopping for someone who can’t go. Pray throughout the day. Spiritual communion is a reality, let it create a deeper longing. Go to Confession (yes I’m including myself in this!) Repent. Be prepared for death, we don’t know the day or the hour, we simply know that death will come. For all of us.
Accept the Bishops decision with grace.