We’re all in this together. How often have we heard these words during this time when the COVID-19 virus has been ravaging our world! Indeed, the crisis reminds us just how interconnected we are here at home and around the world.
We Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers are more aware than ever of our connection to you. You have been our partners in mission through good times and bad, supporting our work in so many ways. Now we reach out to you in solidarity at this time of fear, uncertainty and suffering.
We know that many of you have lost loved ones to the coronavirus. We understand and share your pain. We too have lost members of our mission society—13 of our elders—as well as relatives and friends during this time of pandemic. The Maryknoll Sisters have lost 12 of their members. We grieve together with you and journey with you as we seek comfort in the risen Christ.
We realize that many of you who have been so generous to us throughout the years have suffered severe financial losses and are struggling to make ends meet at this time. Again, we struggle with you in spirit and offer you now our prayerful support.
We are aware that many of you are on the front line striving to serve others, at risk to your own lives: doctors, nurses, supermarket employees, sanitation workers and countless others. Here at Maryknoll we have witnessed the dedication of our own healthcare workers in ministering to our sick and infirm missioners, in our essential workers who keep our operations going on a daily basis and in those employees who are working from home to enable our missioners to continue serving the world’s most vulnerable people.
Pope Francis has described you as “ordinary people—often forgotten people—who do not appear in newspapers and magazine headlines nor on the grand catwalks of the latest show, but who without any doubt are in these very days writing the decisive events of our time.”
With Pope Francis, I thank you for responding in love, and I remind you that it is in self-giving that we find God.
I pray that each and every one of you may take heart in the words of St. Paul to the Romans (8:38-39): “Nothing can separate us from the love of God that we know in Christ Jesus.”
May Our Lady of Maryknoll bless and protect you.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.
Maryknoll Superior General
Featured image: Each evening blue lights illumine the Maryknoll Society center in New York in honor of the healthcare workers and essential services personnel who are selflessly serving others throughout the world during this time of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Daniel Kim/U.S.)