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March 19, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has written a small spiritual reflection (see full reflection below) on the world's situation since the outbreak of the coronavirus crisis.
He reminds us that as human beings, we are reminded now of our limits, in spite of our medical and other advances.
“Although the situation is certainly not comparable to the dangers and turmoil of wartime, the experience of helplessness is similar,” the German cardinal writes.
But this situation, then, can also become an opportunity to turn to God.
“There is also a chance,” he explains, “to reflect on what is important without our attention being distracted by the many distractions of modern life.”
Cardinal Müller concludes: “Let us now, during Lent before Easter, place all our hope in God. His Son is the Servant of God as prophesied in the Old Testament Who ‘bore our sicknesses and bore our pains.’
“And so we confess of Jesus: ‘By His wounds we are healed,’” he adds.
Trust in God in Times of Crisis
By Gerhard Cardinal Müller, Rome
The life-threatening coronavirus has spread and has taken over almost the entire world. There is still no vaccine that could prevent the spread of the contagious disease and cure those affected.
Political leaders are taking all measures available to them to protect the population. They restrict public life and call on people to avoid social contact wherever possible. The scientists in the laboratories are working intensely to find an antidote to this insidious disease, which has already claimed thousands of lives.
Although the situation is certainly not comparable to the dangers and turmoil of wartime, the experience of helplessness is similar. No one knows if and when it will affect him or if people close to him will be in danger. As in times of plague and cholera, of failed harvests and famines, we again feel the limits of what is possible. Everyone knows: the possibilities to protect ourselves from infection are limited. There is no guarantee that it will not affect me of all people. We sit at home and pass the time. Many of us get bored and lack the opportunities for activity at work and in our leisure time.
But when we are thrown back on ourselves in this way, there is also a chance to reflect on what is important without our attention being distracted by the many distractions of modern life.
The believer knows: our life is in God's hands. We have no permanent home on earth. After our death, we must answer before God's Judgment Seat for our deeds and the whole course of life. But we can rely on the mercy of God in life and death, if we only commend ourselves to it.
Even if we do everything humanly possible in medicine and use the reason given to us by God to optimize human living conditions, we still reach the limits of our possibilities. We do not know when, but we know that the hour of farewell from this world will come.
The Apostle Paul has all the misery of humanity before his eyes when he writes to the young Christian community in Rome: “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. (…) the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” (Romans 8:18-21).
Let us now, during Lent before Easter, place all our hope in God. His Son is the Servant of God as prophesied in the Old Testament Who “bore our sicknesses and bore our pains.” And so we confess of Jesus: “By His wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:4seq).
Let us use the time at home to reflect: Who am I? How can I serve the community with my talents in life? Do I love God with all my heart and all my soul and do I love my neighbor as myself? Do I put my hope in Jesus Christ alone, in life and death?
Before His Suffering and Death on the Cross, Our Lord comforted His disciples in their fear and confusion with the words: “In the world you are in tribulation. But have courage: I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33).
Translation Maike Hickson