Recently our lives, like so many others’ lives, fell into unexpected disorder. In the blink of an eye, we were expected to set aside the basic rhythm of our daily lives—the very pulse by which we order our days. What a challenge, especially in America, where our national ethos is largely defined by the fact that we live and die by the workday and where productivity gives us a sense of fulfillment and meaning. We’re expected to adapt to the rollercoaster of emotions and uncertainty brought on by two opposing yet powerful forces: the massive onslaught of information and a looming unknown. Oh, and our kids are home from school. All day.
In times of crisis, people often—rightly—turn to prayer. When confronted with the very real limitations of humanity, the natural response for many is to cry out to God for protection, for rescue, for comfort. At times, though, it can be difficult to find words to articulate these cries for help. Indeed, we may feel helpless in the face of it all. When that happens, the liturgy of the Church and the words of Scripture provide a lifeline to God. By giving ourselves over to the Word of God and the prayer of the Church, we are freed from the burden of trying to speak for ourselves when our hearts are heavy and our minds are weary, and we are united by the grace of the Holy Spirit to our brothers and sisters across time and space—indeed, united with Jesus Christ himself—by making these words our own as they did.