As the weeks unfold, the COVID-19 pandemic becomes larger, scarier and nearer. Most of us, in addition to the many restrictions to our daily routines of family, work and play, are deprived at this time of access to Mass and the Sacraments, especially to the Holy Communion. Now would be a good time to renew the practice of "spiritual communion". Receive Jesus into your hearts. Reverence him there. Speak with him, trust him, love him. Remain with him in silence and presence, your thoughts and energies centered for a while on him alone. These may be brief moments, but they will spread the gentle strength of their grace throughout the difficult day ahead. The Lord is always near and always loving. Welcome him daily into your heart and into your lives through the practice of spiritual communion. It will make all the difference.
Good Lord, on the Cross of Calvary you knew fear and pain. You felt alone and deserted. You saw the pain of your grieving Mother but could not reach down to comfort her. You wondered where God was but trusted still. In death, your heart was pierced, and from it flowed out new life for all the world.
We, Lord, the human family, are in a Calvary all our own at this scary time of pandemic. We too know fear and pain and are often quite alone. We know the pain and grief of our loved ones but cannot now reach out to some of them as once we could with akind word, a helping hand and a comforting presence. We, too, at times wonder where God is. But, like you, we trust still.
Through your pierced side, we see our names written on your Sacred Heart in words of lasting love, assuring us that the rhythm of the pascal mystery always ends in resurrection and new life. To this truth we hold with all our strength. You have promised us that love is stronger than even death itself!
Too often we may have taken the Bread of Life for granted. No more. We miss you in our Sacraments and we promise, once this darkness has passed, to return once again to find you in them – to you who have never left us and never will!
We find comfort in these words of St. Francis de Sales:
Do not be afraid. Let your weary, restless heart rest against the sacred, loving shoulder of this Savior who, by his providence is a father to his children, and by his gentle, tender love is a mother to them.