2020.08.24: community

The pandemic has been a trying time for everyone, especially for those of us who find community in their churches. Living with comorbidity, my wife and I chose to stay away from our church even when services resumed. The only times we have returned were for funerals.

Once it was a funeral for a relative in the church in which my wife and I were married. It was a surreal experience to listen to a foreign priest in the church that I had served many times in my younger days. My glasses fogging up due to an ill fitting mask didn’t lessen the illusion. The second funeral was at our church for the son of a friend of my wife. The music was welcoming, the homily was uplifting, but the dead man was completely unfamiliar. Again it was surreal.

The following day we went to a park with a walking trail through the native habitat. This is our treat to ourselves as we normally only have time to walk the streets of our neighborhood during the week for exercise. There’s something breathtaking when a breeze tiptoes across the native grasses and the lungs just fill up among the trees. Everyone we came across were respectful and friendly. There were glimmers of acknowledgements as we recognized ourselves as kindred spirits. We had all found refuge in a cathedral beneath the canopies. We were no longer strangers in a strange land.

communal spirit
walking unmasked in the park
naked in Eden