“HEROES OF FAITH”
GOING BEYOND THE OBVIOUS
In our last message series of the season, we continue to explore our faith and the pandemic we are in, looking beyond the obvious surface level realities. It has been a long and difficult journey for all of us.
In many ways, life has been put on hold and for many, lives have changed forever. People are struggling, facing difficulties and challenges that could not be foreseen or avoided. Despite the struggle, what opportunities and what lessons are being learned? What more do we see in all of this?
In the midst of the struggles we have seen many heroes who have stepped up in the time of crisis to take care of others, to calm the storm and to forsake their own safety and needs to serve the most vulnerable, those in need and all those who are suffering. Heroes run into the storm, disregarding their personal needs for the sake of helping others. Our world continues to need heroes as they inspire us to live fully—the key to a happy and joyful life is to simply give it away!! What heroes have you discovered during this unprecedented time?
(1) HEALTH CARE WORKERS
We always count on these amazing people when we are sick or in need, but during this pandemic we rely on them even more!! You have seen the stories and the personal price these front line workers have freely given for our benefit. We sometimes forget in our time of need that these amazing professionals have their own cares and concerns.
At the end of their very long and challenging shift, they head home to their families. They have their needs and worries that weigh on them in addition to taking care of their patients. We have been blessed hearing so many stories of these front line heroes who constantly go above and beyond for our sake each and everyday—they have always been doing this for us, long before the pandemic. What amazing heroes!!
(2) ESSENTIAL WORKERS
During this pandemic we have discovered that being a hero takes on many different roles. Who ever thought that we would have to plan and be concerned about going shopping, going to the bank or even going for a walk? Our basic necessities and very simple activities have taken on a very different reality. This is again where our daily heroes come to save us!!
We have discovered the unsung hero grocery clerk, truck driver, postal worker and others who through their dedication and sacrifices made our lives easier and safer. I think we have recognized that everyone plays a pivotal role in making our lives what they are.
We are not really isolated or totally independent. We do actually need to rely on one another. Those jobs and people we may have overlooked prior to the pandemic, have become the central figures necessary to live our lives today. Have we taken the time to thank them for their efforts, support and sacrifice? Will we forget their heroic roles when all this is over?
(3) PIVOTAL PLAYERS
This group includes all those who have pivoted, adapted and have been able to innovate during this difficult time so that they can continue to serve. The pandemic has forced so many institutions and companies to change their ways, not only to survive, but to help contribute to all our communities.
This includes all those in education who have adapted to teaching online, to the local business owners, who in so many different ways seek to be accessible and supportive. This isn’t just about businesses staying afloat, but everyone needs to work, so that they can support themselves and their families, contributing to society as a whole. Again, we are all interconnected. This time of pivoting, adapting and changing is painful and costly, but above all necessary.
Let’s be sure to appreciate all those who have adapted for our sake and who help us live in this “new normal” that is surfacing. Our world is very different today.
(4) SILENT SUPPORTERS
This group of heroes I see in our world today, are the silent and generous supporters of those who are in need. In the midst of the chaos, I have been able to see many people who have donated, supported and stepped up to volunteer in the parish and beyond looking to help anyone in need. They don’t want fanfare or recognition, but they feel a great responsibility to serve, to share and to be Christ for one another.
Whether it is a financial donation to our outreach to those in need, dropping off groceries to the Byron Cares Food Bank or signing up to deliver items, help with the re-opening of our parish or taking care of those in most need in our city—there are countless nameless heroes stepping up and caring. What amazing and beautiful signs of love, peace, joy and hope they are in a world of great need!!
WHAT MORE DO WE SEE?
The pandemic has caused great change and a new perspective. I see that the world still needs heroes. They are not the ones we see at the movies but the ones who simply share who they are and what they have willing to always do more. They are the ones that have embraced the gospel call of sacrifice, service and love. They are the ones that show us Christ in the world—regardless if they intend that or not. True heroes never seek attention for themselves but see a need and move into action.
This is what we are called to do through our baptism and I think this is what we are trying to share in our message series. May we always take time to look deeper, past the obvious, to discover what God really wants to show us. This takes time and effort, but this is how our lives are transformed.
Who are the heroes you see today? How can each of us be a true hero offering ourselves for the sake of others? Will we answer the call?