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The whole neighborhood is home and the grills are going. I sniff the air like Yogi Bear and start pulling things out of the freezer to grill for the week. My cousin from Vegas called to check on us. She is 10 years older and, if there was a liberal chart, she would fall off. We have been closer in touch since the passing of her sister, my other cousin, 15 years older, a couple of years ago. We don’t breach politics. We skirted the issue when she revealed her “psychotic event” when Trump was elected – sigh. So we keep it light. I love the sound of her melodic voice that reminds me of childhood.
She called yesterday and in our five-minute call, as I said we were on our way to pick up food, lamented that Las Vegas is a ghost town. It thrives on crowds — the Strip, gambling, sports events, concerts, conventions — now all gone. Then she suddenly began to rail on Trump, and how his “slow” response to the virus caused our current situation. I asked what about all the other world leaders and their responses? She said, but we are the greatest country, and he dismantled Obama’s emergency response team! I won’t go there but I dismissed it with, “Well, glad you are all ok, and can I call you back?” I don’t feel like calling her back.
I wrote this Saturday, and today is Palm Sunday. The whole world is experiencing Lent, like it or not. Lent is a time of reflection, remorse, a seat on a cliff in the desert, alone. It’s dry, prickly, and scary. Palm Sunday was mentioned by our Vice President, Mike Pence, in Saturday’s briefing. Before that, Dr. Fauci and President Trump, along with his Emergency Response team, gave a conference. It was encouraging. He takes his cues from his team, and gives not only information but whatever else is needed by our country’s governors.
He said, “The job statistics are what they are. We told people to stay home, lock the doors, don’t go out, don’t breathe the air of other people – only then can we get over the curve. Other countries are over the curve, including Italy and Spain. We are 12 days behind.” Then he said we could possibly see easing in a month or so, of restrictions, and get back to work — no commitments, however.
It was President Trump who mentioned Palm Sunday, and at that point, Mike Pence took the podium. Pence said this is the time to pray. A reporter asked what we can do for those on the front lines? Pray. The Vice President reminded us that the doctors and nurses are going back in, over and over, to the hospitals and holding up cell phones so that loved ones can say goodbye to those stricken with this insidious, evil and vile virus via phone. They are saving lives, and are standing in for loved ones who cannot be present. There are no words.
Today is Palm Sunday. I received a copy of the April issue of “Inside the Vatican” in my mailbox. “The Silence of The Virus” is the cover story, with a picture of the Vatican and Rome empty. This will be the first time in history that churches are closed worldwide, there will be no communion, and no Easter services. I had to sit down and think about that. This magazine is also on the front lines — a first responder for the soul, and reminds us that this virus can ravage the body but cannot touch the soul. Beware of what can ravage the soul. I think this is the ultimate message of the COVID-19 virus. The world has been forced to stop in this Season of Lent — to enter the desert with our Lord, to sit in the Mercy Seat, like it or not.
I step back from my cousin’s Trump Derangement Syndrome because the cure is the same — pray for her and I do. I thank God that we have a president who is leading our country, who has been persecuted for the last three years while in office, and still has a clear focus on our country and our well-being. So on Palm Sunday, give thanks that this virus cannot touch the soul of those who look up, knowing that our redemption is always drawing near.
Prayer – Its Effect is to Hold The World Together.Published in