Reflection from the online discussion about the several impacts of Covid-19 on regions in Europe and the Movements of Catholic Students,held on the 16th of May,

We must acknowledge how people are easily affected by an external element no matter how small. A simple virus has stopped the world from its daily routine and impacted economies and the typical social life. This is the fact that we are facing but one should not just simply react and like water find alternate routes to bypass this boulder. We should also find the time to reflect and choose carefully and meaningfully the path we will be moving to bypass this boulder. Possibly also find the means to pass other obstacles that are hindering us or even find a deeper sense of gratitude for the fact that we can move forward.

In the moments of sharing a sense of hope was being transmitted. Even when talking about hardships one could also sense the strength and courage shown towards them. It was true that in facing such hardships many hidden fears may emerge not just of individuals but also of society. These may the take form of prejudices and unjust blame especially when one stumbles in front of his weakness or discover his ineptitude. Flaws and limits in our social structures are discovered. Things that were looked upon as powerful and indestructible structures crawled down. Means on which we based our daily life crumbled. Yet on the other hand other structures started to emerge and new means started to be created. Here we should not just realise the power of adaptability but also the fact that whatever structure we may construct we should always understand its fragility. The reality we are facing today continued to show the unbalance of resources and means, yet also paradoxically how as such these may mean nothing. Interestingly amidst this chaos nonmaterial resources found greater value. Inner talent, relationships, solidarity, prayer, and other resources that are not found in the material world but in the hearts of people. It is true that other structures and means were created but they were directed by different desires then the usual ones. Structures that emphasised connectedness, care, approachability, and search for the transcendent. It was interesting how many things that movements created as an answer to this pandemic were not directed by the need of making the movement felt in society or basic fun factor, but more by the need of coming together, giving voice to each other and finding a new source of strength to face our hardships and challenges. This is truly something to celebrate and cherish. May we also in the future give more credit to such needs rather than others (still do leave some place for fun as this is a good spice in the whole mix ?).

In conclusion now we can understand what we mean by saying to find our means to live in our hearts. May we have experienced charity, solidarity, faith, and hope in these hard times so that we may continue to live them throughout the rest of our life good and bad. May we have also understood the source of such experiences so that when we feel lacking, we may know where to look or better for whom we need to look in our hearts.

May God Bless us and Keep us

Fr Sergio Fenech
European Chaplain

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