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The “Lord’s Prayer” is not to be prayed with resignation: “Father, what will happen will happen,” or “Since it’s an order, I’ll obey”–as though we were being called to attention by a spiritual commander-in-chief. Such an attitude would indicate that “the servant does not know what the master is doing” (John 15:15), which is not at all the case. He who has given up his life guides us along his path, making us acquainted with God’s will so that we do it freely. And the will of God is that each of us contributes to the salvation of mankind. Once we know this, a prodigious perspective opens up before us, affecting both our prayers and daily existence.
Whether afflicted or relatively carefree, we are tempted to focus on ourselves in our dialogue with God. So be it. “My Creator and myself,” as Cardinal Newman used to say. It is, of course, true that our singular one-to-one relationship with God is the foundation of our faith. But “my” Creator is also the Creator of “all my brothers and sisters.” Each one of us is included in God’s universal plan, and our respective lives are projected into the context of God’s love for all humanity.
You who are elderly and exhausted may be saying to yourselves, “I’m ready now to go on and be with God.” You who suffer, who have been abandoned, who weep, may be questioning, “Why should I go on living? There’s no one around to listen to me, no one for whom my existence matters.” But it is precisely you, who, by your interior offering, must carry everyone else in your prayers. Unite yourself to Christ, who says with your lips, “Thy will be done.” You share in the power of Christ’s intercession. You must struggle until the end and offer what you are enduring, not only for those whom you know, but for the entire Church and all the world.
Every instant of every life counts in the history of humanity’s salvation.
from The Lord’s Prayer by Jean-Marie Cardinal Lustiger
Hospitals across the country are debating how to deal with COVID-19-stricken patients who have gone into cardiac arrest or stopped breathing. Normally, when these incidents occur at a hospital, a “code-red” will sound that brings medical personnel running to enact life-saving measures. Most of these measures involve close contact and bodily fluids. With scarce resources and not enough protective equipment, it can be dangerous for doctors and nurses to interact with the sick. Hospitals need to decide how to best protect their workers, who are the most important scarce resource.
I don’t have any answers for the medical personnel, only a cry to the Lord for people who have to make these horrible decisions of allocation. Lord, bless those who seek to help and heal others. Let them be your hands in this world. Every instant of every life counts.