Covid-19, a virus blowing through the air, is everywhere in the world; many are suffering and people are dying every day – things are not the way they used to be, bringing everyone face to face with a new reality now. This brings to the fore the words of St Paul, “more than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that our suffering produces endurance, and endurance produce character, and character produce hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy spirit who has been given to us”(Romans 5:3-5).
Here in Lebanon, there has been much hardship brought about by the lockdown and the economic downturn. Since 12th March 2020 the health system and the economy of our country continues to struggle as a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic. There has been no movement; schools have been closed and there are no Masses celebrated in our various parishes. We are indoors, living each day looking up with hope in God’s intervention.
In our little community of OLA sisters we assist at Mass either through the television, Facebook or Youtube. We spend more time in our community prayers where we pray for the world and for all those who have died because of the coronavirus. For we live with hope, knowing that the suffering of this present time will not make us lose the vision of the glory that is to be revealed to us.
During this difficult lockdown period, we try to see God in everything we do, bearing in mind the words of our founder who encouraged us to live out our faith as the foundation of all Christian life, because it rests on the rocks of divine truth, “act in the spirit of faith in all you do”.
We continue to encourage ourselves with our daily house chores, cooking, planting, watering the plants and flowers around us, singing together, exercising our bodies, watching interesting movies, praying and sharing our daily life experiences together. Our sisters working in the schools continue their activities by sending their lessons to the students online. Most importantly, we encourage our beloved ones who are far and nearby, through our prayers, constant communication and helpful words/ reflections through phone calls and social media.
In order to keep safe and healthy, we respect the various instructions of the health ministry by washing our hands regularly and putting on our masks when is necessary. We, the OLA Sisters in Lebanon, would as well urge you all to do so and cast all your anxieties on the Lord, who cares and loves us and in whom our lives find meaning in the midst of life trials.
Sr. Jovita Onuchi