The springtime of our lives

Posted 4/8/20

We are warned that this next week will bring heartache and death as the coronavirus continues its devastating path through our communities, across the nation and around the globe.

Soon, all of us …

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The springtime of our lives


We are warned that this next week will bring heartache and death as the coronavirus continues its devastating path through our communities, across the nation and around the globe.

Soon, all of us will know someone who has the virus. Someone who has lost a loved one.

At the same time, we will witness the rebirth of spring.

Flowers will continue to emerge; the weather will turn warmer; the days will become longer.

We will experience the relief that our ancient ancestors felt with this rebirth. Their fears at the time, that the earth would not renew itself, were put to rest and they celebrated.

Celebrating for us, at this time of springtime renewal, is a harder road to travel. Amid the earth’s blossoming, we also experience a continuum of disease and, in some cases, despair.

With this devastation, each of us is challenged to find the best in ourselves. To find resiliency. To find resolve to make the best of a, seemingly, worst-case scenario. To find a calm center that is life-affirming. To find hope.

Already, we have seen the best emerging. Already, we have experienced neighbors helping neighbors. Already, we have seen ingenuity emerge as we face medical supply shortages.

We are learning appreciation. We are learning how fragile our society is. We are learning how we depend on others to provide us with very basic needs. We are experiencing how interconnected we actually are.

And we are finally realizing the truth that was spoken by Pope Francis in a nearly empty St. Peters Basilica in honor of Palm Sunday: “Dear friends, look at the real heroes who come to light in these days: they are not famous, rich and successful people; rather, they are those who are giving themselves in order to serve others.”

We are surrounded by ordinary people who are giving themselves to serve others: truck drivers and delivery people, farmers and farm workers, grocery store clerks and managers, post office workers, police officers, emergency management personnel, social workers, teachers, childcare providers, utility maintenance professionals, healthcare workers, servicemen and women, nurses, doctors. Their dedication deserves our profound thanks. Their dedication also proves that the great strength of this country remains where it has always been: in ordinary Americans setting their shoulders to accomplish the task before them.

The task before us is of Herculean nature. We don’t know how long it will last. We don’t know what our lives will look like when we get to the other side of this. We don’t know if when the situation gets much more dire—which it will—that we will still be able to hold onto our humanity and fully embrace a nation for the people, by the people with liberty and justice for all.

What we do know, though, is that today we can embrace this springtime renewal with thoughts of resurrection, liberation and the rebirth of all that is life-giving.  We can remember that calamity reveals who we truly are and that, in our past, we have weathered great crises. More than that, those crises have produced a renewal of our vow that all of us are created equal and are entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Great challenges have inspired us to try to create a government and a nation that really reflects, once and for all, the principle of human self-determination.

In this time of great challenge and great beauty, I wish you all that you need to feel relatively safe, well taken care of and, most of all, loved.

[Editor’s note: In this time of calamity and in the spirit of transparency, The River Reporter is reverting to its long-standing practice of signed editorials.]

hope, spring


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