Mercy Global Action: Presence of/with/to God
Amanda Carrier rsm (Americas)
The pandemic forced us to stop. It forced us to be still, to take stock, and to reflect. Without the routine busyness of our normal lives, we could see the poor and the sick, and the marginalized and the oppressed with new eyes. Covid-19 highlighted systemic injustices, inequality, and marginalization but is also drew us, individually and collectively, into the presence of God. Though the pandemic overwhelmed us, we can hear the presence of God- in loss, hope, and the new normal- calling us to build back better.
We each lost something as Covid-19 touched our lives. Some losses were physical: jobs, homes, health, or life itself. Intangible losses gave rise to the emotional strain we all experienced as a result of the pandemic. Without the freedom to move, to be near our loved ones, or to feel safe and secure, we struggled to cope. Additionally, we experienced these losses in our isolation, which is a loss in itself. Yet, the experience of loss connected us all. Everyone everywhere shared this experience together, and this gave us an unprecedented common context on a global scale.
The global reality of the pandemic calls us to be present to all of humanity and Earth as this crisis highlighted existing injustices, systemic inequalities, and oppression. Housing, violence, migration, food and water, and our political institutions all showed blatant inequalities as Covid-19 swept across the globe. In the pandemic's light, we see how far we still must go in the ongoing struggle from a just and equitable society. The reality can overwhelm us as we bear witness to profits being valued over people and Earth.
Our presence to the cry of the oppressed under the pressure of our common experience of the pandemic generated momentum for change. The momentum, cultivated through the individual and communal integration of our Covid-19 experience, comes with a sense of urgency. We must not lose our momentum and the political will
will to act in this time of loss. We must not go through all this suffering only to return to the old normal...
Spanish translation by the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. Traducción al español por las Hermanas de la Misericordia de las Américas
Amanda Carrier rsm is a Sister of Mercy of the Americas and blogger who shares her experiences in ministry and as a sister on her blog A Deer Thirsts. She is currently working on a master’s in theology at Villanova University. Before that, she worked on social justice concerns, including the degradation of the earth, at Mercy International Association Global Action at the United Nations. Amanda enjoys cooking for her community in Philadelphia, especially baking homemade bread.
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