One of the biggest challenges we face as a religious community in Covid is losing our identity. As a pastor, I struggle with not being as involved in my parishioners’ life as I would be under normal circumstances. I am new to the church and find it exceedingly difficult to establish deep connections in our current environment. “When will this nightmare end?”
Faith must be our rock, our comfort, and our hope. When I get down about the news, I hold fast to the promise that the best is yet to come. How did the Hebrew people hear the words of the prophets? They must have felt abandoned by the Divine as they faced exile. It isn’t easy to believe that prosperity will flow in the land in the middle of the worst of times. The captives responded, “How can we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land?” (Ps. 137:4 NRSV).
The reality is that through the harshness of whatever situations in which we find ourselves, we must remain diligent in finding a Divine presence. Holy love is right here, in this very moment. We must cling to hope until the light reveals the path by which we take to find deliverance. Hold on and remain faithful, for the promise arrives in the most peculiar of ways.
Ministry may not look like it did pre-Covid, but that does not mean that we cannot think out of the box and try other approaches. The challenge is to discover ways to bring people together in a virtual world. Our faith community should not be a casualty in the war on this dreaded disease. We must stand together and petition God to help us find ways to share in fellowship, even if that means sitting in front of a computer.
May divine light guide you and instruct you on the right path. I pray that your spirit illuminates with joy and that you share it with a world that needs relief right now. Let us keep the faith and continue our journey. Remember, they will know we are Christians by our love.