Prayer Amidst Pandemic

O Holy One,

We’re frightened. Simply and honestly, we’re frightened. We can summon up our courage, but we must summon it amidst our fear.

We fear the thing we cannot see.

For some, this fear has led us into frenzy. Look, see the empty shelves where frozen foods and sanitizing lotion and toilet paper rolls were stocked. Look, see the calls and visits rising at the doctors’ offices, the urgent cares, the hospitals’ emergency rooms. Look, see the frenzy.

For some, this fear has led us into flat denial. Look, see the false-faced reassurances. Look, see the failures to anticipate. Look, see the bald refusal to take ownership of errors.

For some, this fear has led to false bravado. Look, see the gatherings still scheduled, defiant and unwise. Look, see the accusations leveled against “foreign” carriers of illness. Look, see the quest for blame replace the quest for health.

Look and see, O God. Look and see.

Now help us see, we pray, the actions of compassion. May we care for one another in our caution, less concerned with how this virus might affect “my” health than how it might bring harm to “yours.” May we keep our sickness to ourselves (for once, and if only this once, then at least this once). May we bring our groceries to share, our voices over telephones or video streams, our prayers…

Our prayers to you.

Grant strength to those who struggle to breathe. Grant protection to those who labor in healing. Grant compassion to those who share their ability to move about with those who must stay home. Grant connections of hearts between those who must refrain, for now, from touching hands.

In the name of the Healing Christ,

Amen.

Photo by Eric Anderson.