A word we often hear now regarding the Coronavirus outbreak and its consequences is unprecedented, and it is true. I have never experienced anything like this in my lifetime. I grew up knowing my Dad when he was 19 had caught the flu after the 1st World War but thankfully had survived. He lived in Otago at that time. Now the world is living through another pandemic. My heart goes out to all those families experiencing grief in having lost loved ones in Italy and elsewhere.
And today in our country there are no public Masses, and this will be the case for some time one would expect. I know many of you will be feeling a deep loss about that. That is why in today’s sharing I wanted to read the Gospel to you so that you could hear it rather than just read it just as you would have if you had attended Mass. In these days we need to continue to support and encourage each other in our faith in creative ways.
The Churches are still open and we can go in and spend quiet time there and lift our minds and hearts in prayer for our families and communities, we can still read our scriptures, spiritual books, pray and share our faith in small groups and listen to encouraging input on the internet. Let’s keep each other in mind and hold each other in the heart of Christ who is always present to us wherever we are.
I wonder what spoke to you as you heard me read the Gospel today. You may like to repeat that word, phrase or thought in your mind and reflect on why that word or phrase resonated with you. I was struck by the last part of the Gospel when the blind man who had been healed replied to Jesus’ question about faith ‘tell me who he is so that I may believe in him.’ And Jesus responding, ‘You are looking at him; he is speaking to you.’
If you want to you can close your eyes and imagine the face of Jesus or you may have a favourite image of him that you can look at. If you are looking at him, you can be confident that he is looking at you. He knows what you need. He knows your fears and anxieties. Talk to him about those things and then sit in the silence of his healing and reassuring presence. You may like to make an act of faith in him like the blind man did. ‘Lord I believe’.
You can also listen to ‘Trust’ from ‘Ignatian Inspiration’.