By Fr. McShane, President of Fordham University
God of all mercies, grant:
To our families and communities, safety and good health:
To those afflicted with COVID-19, swift healing;
To health-care providers, strength and stamina;
To our leaders, wisdom and compassion;
To our nation, unity and purpose;
To the dying, comfort;
To the dead, eternal life;
To all believers, strong faith in You;
To the Church, the gift of service;
To the whole human family, unity of heart; and
To us, your servants, the reward of knowing that we are doing Your will when we spend ourselves in loving service of others.
May the God of all consolation walk with us through these difficult times. And may God find us worthy of the call to be a healing and reconciling presence in a wounded world. Amen.
by Meg Olson
In this time of uncertainty and fear, help us be love, mercy, and peace for ourselves and for others as we face coronavirus in the United States and around the World.
Help us hold close in our hearts those who have died,
and their loved ones who mourn them,
Those who are sick or are trying to seek medical care.
Those who don’t have paid sick leave, benefits, or job security.
Those whose schools have closed
and don’t have access to food, safe homes, or technology.
Those who can’t travel to be with loved ones who are ill or dying.
Those who are facing discrimination and harassment because of ethnicity.
Those who are struggling with loneliness during this time of social isolation.
Those who are frightened and losing hope.
Help us find joy, however small it seems.
Help us remain hopeful.
Help us remember that “All shall be well, for there is a force moving through the universe that holds us fast and will never let us go.”
by Fr. Richard Hendrick, OFM
Yes there is fear. Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying. Yes there is sickness. Yes there is even death. But,
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighborhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.
Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary
All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbors in a new way All over the world people are waking up to a new reality
To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now. Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
By Cameron Wiggins Bellim
May we who are merely inconvenienced
remember those whose lives are at stake.
May we who have no risk factors
remember those most vulnerable.
May we who have the luxury of working from home
remember those who must choose between
preserving their health or making their rent.
May we who have the flexibility
to care for our children
when their schools close
remember those that have no options.
May we who have to cancel our trips
remember those who have no safe place to go.
May we who are losing our margin money
in the tumult of the economic market
remember those who have no margin at all.
May we who settle for a quarantine at home
remember those who have no home.
As fear grips our country,
let us choose love during this time when we
cannot physically wrap our arms around each other,
let us find ways to be the loving embrace
of God to our neighbor. Amen.