During Holy Week we once again enter into the heart of our faith – the suffering and death of Gods son Jesus Christ. In my daily prayers I have been listening to the Taize chant “Stay with me” based on the words of Jesus to his friends in the Garden of Gethsemane. Many words have been written and many artworks have been produced about Jesus’ last days. One of the most powerful Holy Week image for me is the group of women waiting at the foot of the cross, keeping watch with Christ. As I write this Boris Johnson is in intensive care. His family is just one of 1000’s watching and waiting at home while their loved one is cared for in hospital.
Jesus friends tried to stay awake but fell asleep. The events of the previous days had left them exhausted. Living through the Covid19 pandemic is taking its emotional toll on us. I believe we are experiencing collective grief and have heard it expressed in my conversations with people.
We have lost parts of our normal life that give our life meaning. We need to let go of what we can’t control and focus on what we can do. Part of keeping healthy means accepting we will have negative feelings -Jesus did. It can help to take 5 minutes to feel whatever emotion we are feeling and let it go.
Christ prayed “Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” Covid 19 has brought great suffering to our world. We long for the cup of suffering caused by Covid 19 to be taken away from us. Until that day comes, we watch wait and pray. We can watch and pray in hope because we do it in the name of Jesus Christ the one who has suffered for us. He alone can enter the heart of suffering and bring hope where there is despair, life where there is death.