Lent in a time of COVID-19. Sadly, we’ve been here before. Little did we know as we began Lent last year that a year later we would still be in the grips of this deadly pandemic. It was not even officially a pandemic then, and wasn’t until the World Health Organization declared it so on March 11, 2020. The death toll and infection rates we’ve seen were unimaginable, as was the impact on our daily lives.
“How we long to go back to that sure safety/ Where bad habits, cool indifference, and/ Cruel apathy made us blissfully forgetful/ Of death’s sad certainty,” writes Maryknoll Father Joseph R. Veneroso in this issue’s photo meditation.
We have spent the year mourning, not only for lives lost but for our lost lives, for all that we’ve missed, from the essential to the trivial, from the sacred to the mundane. We have coped with sudden unanticipated changes, and we have coped with daily monotony. We have suffered.
Amid this disruption of the world as we knew it, many of us have also counted our blessings and gained new appreciation for whom and what we love. As people of faith, we also have hope—hope that in the worst of circumstances, even in death, there is a tomorrow, a renewal of life beyond our temporal existence. There is a light, a new dawn and a resurrection.
Lynn F. Monahan