Fr. Raymond J. de Souza: Facing the Coronavirus Pandemic Like a Catholic

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COMMENTARY: Now that there is time to make sober adjustments, pastors might find creative ways to publicly continue the prayer of the Church.

By Father Raymond J. de Souza, EWTN News, 3/16/20

Father Raymond J. de Souza is the editor in chief of Convivium magazine.

The speed with which coronavirus protocols had to be implemented late last week led to an understandable — and unavoidable — confusion. That confusion even hit the highest levels of the Church in Rome, with two senior cardinals in a very public conflict. And Pope Francis himself got involved.

But now with a few days to reflect, some principles and practices are emerging.

Prayer Is Not Canceled but Continues

While public gathering for worship and prayer may be canceled, worship and prayer are not canceled. To the contrary, they should be intensified.

That’s not just a scriptural reality: “Pray constantly” (1 Thessalonians 5:17; Christian Standard Bible); “from the rising of the sun to its setting the name of the Lord is to be praised” (Psalm 113:3; New American Standard Bible). It’s also a civic reality in the United States. President Donald Trump declared Sunday, March 15, a national day of prayer, quoting the Scriptures: “Casting all your care upon him, for he careth for you” (1 Peter 5:7; King James Version); and “For with God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37). ….

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