A Message from Our Pastor

Published on Mar 23rd, 2020 by Jeremy Vest | 0


Why Worry when We Can Pray and Take Necessary Precautions?

Footprints in the Sand is a beautiful poem which is well-known. However, to remind you of this poem I am giving it below:

“One night I dreamed a dream.
As I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand,
One belonging to me and one to my Lord.

“After the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that at many times along the path of my life,
especially at the very lowest and saddest times,
there was only one set of footprints.

“This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
You’d walk with me all the way.
But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life, there was only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me.”

“He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you.”

Until few weeks ago our lives have been normal, of course, with the usual ups and downs. Then all of a sudden we were hit with a pandemic  — COVID-19 caused by Coronavirus. Now the whole world is reeling under the blow of this unforeseen infectious disease. First  identified in China it has spread all over the world causing the deaths of thousands of people especially in China and Italy. Now we are all worried about what is going to happen since no successful vaccine has been found to combat this disease.

In this alarming situation we know that God is with us. But do we believe that in this hurting time he is not only with us but he is really carrying us in his hands? Well, this is really the truth because we were created in his loving providence and it is under the umbrella of the same providence that we are passing through this crisis. Hence, what is needed is trust in his providence and surrender our lives into his hands. In the book of Deuteronomy we read, “There you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place” (Deuteronomy 1:31).

Yes, this is one of the times we need the Lord Jesus to carry us through. And remember, he is with us always as he promised, “I will be with you till the end of the ages” (Mathew 28:20). He is always with us in his word (Bible), in the sacraments, especially in the Eucharist and in each one of us. What is important is that we love him and walk with him trusting in his goodness and mercy.

There is the story of a man who had a dream in which an angel appeared to him with a list of names in his hand. When the man saw the list he became curious and asked the angel what the list was about. “It is the list of people who love God,” replied the angel with a smile. Getting hold of the list the man found his name was not in the list. Immediately his face fell. Then the angel showed him another list and said that his name was included in that second list. It was the list of people whom God loves!

Yes, God loves us dearly even when we do not remember him and love him. And that is all the more reason for us to turn to him and ask his special help to tide over this heart-breaking crisis. Words like “Do not be afraid,” “Fear not” and “Be courageous” appear a few hundred times in the Bible and they are meant for us, to strengthen us and comfort us. Hence, as Jesus says, “Fear is useless; what is needed is faith” (Mark 5:36). Let us now hold on to our faith more than ever before and let us continue to pray with faith that our prayers will be answered.

St. Padre Pio used to remind people, “Why worry when we can pray with hope? ” Let us try to follow his advice and try to pray constantly with hope and without worry for an early end to this pandemic. Right now we cannot come together to pray as a community. However, united in faith and love we can pray in our homes for our well-being as well as the well-being of the whole humanity. At the same time let us try to follow the guidelines of both civil and ecclesiastical authorities and take the necessary precautions to avert this tragedy. I am far away in India for some meetings but my thoughts and prayers are always with you. Kindly continue to pray for me and also for the people of India at this time of global catastrophe.

May God bless you always with good health and peace.

Fr. Jose