Daily Archives: April 6, 2020

(CT) Timothy Dalrymple–Joy Comes in the Morning

That’s what it felt like to have a heart attack. Then it felt like flashes of fear in the night as you wonder whether your heartbeat feels normal; a staggered coming-to-grips with the trauma of what occurred; concern your spouse should be provided for; grieving at the thought of your children standing over an early grave; taking more pictures than normal so they will have something to look back on.

Then it felt like—joy. Joy to be alive. Joy at the simple pleasure of drawing breath and feeling the sweet stillness of a moment. Joy at the way the sunlight feels when it lifts the water off your skin. Joy at the warmth of your beloved’s breath upon your cheek. Joy at how the glowing light dances across the embers of a fire, and the sparks tumble skyward.

Sometimes we need to view our lives through a mirror. In our sorrow we learn to appreciate joy. In loss we discover how much we have gained. Death reflects the sacredness and fragility of life.

One thing I have heard amid the pandemic is this: Is it okay to feel joy? Is it acceptable, when so many are suffering, that I am finding joy in additional time for stillness or for family? Is it wrong for me to discover that I am oddly joyful amid the isolation?

Read it all.

Posted in Holy Week, Theology: Scripture

(CNBC) Are Body Temperature Checks before entry into Places of Business Coming in the Future?

Tyson Foods is using walk-through infrared body temperature scanners at three processing plants in an effort to keep coronavirus out of its sites and maintain the stability of U.S. food supply.

The scanners can check employees’ temperature as they walk into the building.

Tyson gave CNBC an exclusive first look at video of how the walk-through scanners work.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Theology

(The State) Governor McMaster toughens South Carolina coronavirus stance with ‘go to work or stay home’ order

Seeking to further minimize movement across the state, South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster issued a more pointed executive order Monday telling people to stay at home if they are not at work or out tending to essential needs.

The executive order takes effect Tuesday, and follows a number of other mandates McMaster already has issued prohibiting large gatherings, closing access to beaches and lakes and closing many nonessential businesses to curb the spread of the coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, a potentially severe upper respiratory disease.

It also comes after days of McMaster urging South Carolina residents to use “common sense” and stay home if they can.

Read it all.

Posted in * South Carolina, Economy, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, State Government

(NYT Op-ed) Tish Warren–I Miss Singing at Church

…we believe that God came not as a book or a codex of laws or as a hologram or a creed or an idea, but as a person in a body, Jesus. In assuming a body, God redeems embodiment itself. Therefore, we believe in the resurrection not merely of the soul, floating away to some ephemeral mist, but also of the body.

Before two weeks ago, it was pretty easy to ignore the brute fact of our embodiment. We can habituate ourselves to noticing our bodies only when we are counting up their flaws or trying to improve them, as though they are a beast to tame or marble to sculpt. Or we can be tempted to embrace the digital revolution so wholeheartedly that we prefer the company of an avatar on a screen over the ordinary goodness of being a body with other bodies. Or we can ignore bodies altogether, focusing completely on the life of the mind. Or more often, on the bottom line.

This virus has exposed that we have whole segments of society that do not have paid sick leave, and human resource policies and cultures that depend upon overlooking the pesky reality that any worker has a limited and needy body that deserves care.

We must embrace social distancing, for as long is as needed, to protect our health care system and the very real, fleshy bodies of millions of people. But we also need to collectively notice that something profound is lost by having to interact with the world and our neighbors in mostly disembodied, digital ways. This is something to lament and to grieve. And like all grief, it exposes the value and glory of the thing that was lost.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Health & Medicine, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Theology

(The State) ‘Easter’s not canceled.’ As pandemic threatens sacred week, people of faith find hope

There won’t be choral cantatas and churchwide egg hunts and congregations gathered for sunrise services or sunset prayers.

There won’t be extended family dinners or traditional communion ceremonies.

Two of the most significant religious seasons of the year, Easter and Passover, collide this week with a historic season of illness, anxiety and widespread isolation, as the coronavirus pandemic bears down across the globe.

While traditions and ceremonies have been dampened, the significance and spiritual comfort of the holidays has been heightened. And while churches and synagogues across the nation and here in the Midlands will have their doors closed to most parishioners this week, their messages of hope and meaning will be spoken far and wide.

“I would say, in fact, the meaning has been magnified,” said George Wright, pastor of Shandon Baptist Church in Columbia. “This Easter, everybody is recognizing life is not normal. In that reflective mode, people are asking questions they normally don’t consider. They’re looking for hope and looking for some answers in all of this.”

Read it all.

Posted in * South Carolina, Easter, Holy Week, Religion & Culture

(EF) Gilbert Lennox–Keeping our heads above water

But then the ‘ghost’ spoke. This was no trick of the light. They weren’t imagining things. There were words, real communication that all could hear: “Take courage. It is I. Do not be afraid.” This was no ghost: it was Jesus. The storm did not cease when Jesus spoke but what a difference his words made: “It is I.” Jesus was walking through the storm with them. And what a difference those same words can make to us as our current storm hits deeper each day: “Take courage. It is I. Do not be afraid.” The Lord is with us in the storm, just as he promised his disciples as he commissioned them to take the gospel to the world: “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). In the final weeks before his death, the Lord repeatedly referred to the fact that he was going away, preparing his disciples for the time when he would no longer be physically present with them. “I will not leave you as orphans”, he said, “I will come to you”. They would no longer be able to see him, have a meal with him, go for a walk with him. But he would be present. The Lord is with us in every storm, whether we feel he is or not. In a storm our emotions are as unstable as the sea. We must expect that. In our house we have experienced anxiety, tears, fear and frustration and we are just in the early days of this crisis. But we can make the truth of Christ’s presence with us more real by doing what the disciples did that day on the Sea of Galilee: listening to his words and following what he says.

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Posted in Christology, Preaching / Homiletics, Theology: Scripture

(NYT) The New Jersey Nurse Was Holding Up. Then Her 3 Close Relatives Were Brought In.

Twelve doctors at her hospital and the chief executive were sickened with the coronavirus. A colleague had died. Patients as young as 19 were being placed on ventilators.

But Michele Acito, the director of nursing at Holy Name Medical Center, in the hardest-hit town in New Jersey’s hardest-hit county, felt like she was holding up.

Then her mother-in-law, sister-in-law and brother-in-law arrived.

The disease that has crippled New York City is now enveloping New Jersey’s densely packed cities and suburbs. The state’s governor said on Friday that New Jersey was about a week behind New York, where scenes of panicked doctors have gripped the nation.

Hospitals in the state are scrambling to convert cafeterias and pediatric wings into intensive care units. Ventilators are running low. One in three nursing homes has at least one resident with the virus.

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family

A Palm Sunday Sermon 2020 from Bishop Mark Lawrence

Palm Sunday Sermon 2020 from Bishop Mark Lawrence from The Anglican Diocese of SC on Vimeo.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Holy Week, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics

A Prayer to Begin the Day from the American BCP

Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

Posted in Holy Week, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Scripture Readings

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother.

To the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints who are in the whole of Acha”²ia:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken; for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort.

–2 Corinthians 1:1-7

Posted in Theology: Scripture