Navigating a Pandemic

None of us have ever been through something like this before. There is no road map to follow. My grandparents lived through the Spanish flu 100 years ago, the last time there was a pandemic like this. But they are not around to consult. Churches had to close; thousands of people were sick and many succumbed to the illness, and the world was still counting its severe losses from a long World War that also took many lives. But then the 1920s roared in and life was lived in a new way.

This will come to an end in a few weeks or a few months. How will we know it is over? I have no idea. It is not like a tornado where the weather service can sound the “all clear.” There will be some sign, though, that we can gather together again, perhaps in new ways, and once again celebrate our faith in ways that are familiar and comforting.

Until then, how are you making the gospel known? Do school children need food? How are you helping? Do hourly workers and their employers need support? Is there something your church can do? Are your church members becoming more afraid or isolated or lonely? How are you reaching out? What is most important to your community of faith? Is there a way to communicate that (the music, the prayers, the sermon, the community feeling) in a way that does not endanger anyone’s health?

We believe that all who are called to understand their place in the world as a forgiven and beloved child of God are also given the gifts that are needed to live out that new life. How will you use your gifts in new ways so that, even when you are afraid or nervous or feeling defeated, you can still be a part of bringing hope in the name of Jesus?
Sue Krummel, Executive Presbyter
Presbytery of Chicago