It is amazing that a little thing that you cannot even see can cause worldwide panic! A tiny virus. Suddenly, the world takes notice, life stops and one walls oneself away in quarantine just like the cities in the middle ages. Read Edgar Allan Poe’s The Masque of the Red Death if you want some context to the current situation!
We are so vulnerable. It takes an outbreak like this to convince us of this fact that often is obscured by the amazing reality of our health. When we see all the uncountable things that need to delicately work together to create the state of health, we can truly appreciate the constant gift of God that is what we call health. It means everything is in order and the whole complex reality of who I am is working well!
Then comes the virus with the potential of sweeping through the population, reeking havoc.
We can see these strange dynamics in the stock market that reacts to the slightest historical reality with wild mood swings that can ruin someone in a day!
Because of this inherent vulnerability, we are called to rely on something, or rather Someone, who cannot change, who always is there for us.
When we meditate and ponder on our own vulnerability, we inherently seek the basic principle of stability that is the “Rock” of our salvation. For us, it is Christ. Seen in this way, the contagion that is the most destructive is not the contagion of the COVID-19 coronavirus, but the contagion of sin. Who has not been ‘inspired’ to do something evil by seeing someone profit by his transgression and seemingly doing it without any immediate and visible punishment? The pleasure in the transgression also prepares the individual to even more sinning since it seems, falsely, to be beneficial to the individual and not the terrible thing with terrible consequences that the individual was warned about by the Holy Scriptures. The consequences of sin are often delayed, giving the person the false impression that, “I got away with it and I can do it again!” When observed by others, this becomes an incitement to sin and, thus, the contagion is spread; spread until the wrath of God is made manifest and all is made visible and the transparency highlights the evil plainly.
This was the trajectory of history that happened in the sexual abuse crisis. No one gets away with evil. Sometimes the wrath of God delays in the hope that, with time, conversion will occur. But sometimes conversion does not happen. The results are often decisive and terrible. While the mercy of God is powerful indeed, so is the justice of God. Human freedom is awesome since it can say ‘no’ to God.
Moreover, the willful destruction in the womb of the innocent child in the name of human rights is a direct attack on the will of God that is forming that child; He can see all that the person that child will become can possibly do for the benefit of humanity.
With the power of sinful contagion and its dangers to those around us, including our loved ones, we need the help of God and the guidance of the Church. The contagion of disease requires some careful protocols. So, also, the contagion of vice, since part of it is the mistakes inherent in following the wrong course of things. The moral teaching of the Church, though often tough and not easy to fulfill, protects us from the disease of sin, for this sickness is propagated by the false pretenses of what are needs tell us we have to have!
We must be always on our guard since the tempter is always interested in destroying us. The Evil One and his minions are always looking for the moment to transform a look or a word spoken and plant the seeds of suspicion in the mind of the believer. Without the grace of God, we are very vulnerable to evil. We mustn’t forget that the demons were once angels of God, endowed with tremendous intelligence, far beyond our minds. They can twist our perceptions and place obstacles in our thinking, using our pride and fears against us.
That is why we need the Church and Her teaching. There is a great deal of accumulated wisdom in the Magisterium, that is, the accumulated teaching of the Church. Just as we need the wealth of scientific knowledge to combat this coronavirus, we need the teaching of the Church, which is based on the revealed Word of God, to preserve our moral safety in this uncertain life we live.
Vulnerable, alone, but impregnable with the Church.
May Our Blessed Mother, under her title of Our Lady of Good Health, protect and defend us all, both spiritually and physically. Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God!