A sensitive heart and a transformed life
From Manila - Sr Diem Chi
From mid-March to June 2020
Manila was locked down because an increasing number of people are infected with Covid-19. No face-to-face Mass. No face-to-face class. Spiritual life and academic life based on the laptop and internet.
Pandemic news everywhere. The big world became one together facing the small virus.
Confined to a small room, I had time to retreat and explore what was happening inside me, thanks to the long term break of more than XNUMX months.
Firstly, Fear of infection for myself and my loved ones. Uncertainty about future of the world Sadness for the suffering of the poor all over the world
Praying with the song: “We carry the Saving Cross” during the Lenten Season.[I].
Then, Easter came - the special Easter - try to contemplate Easter Mystery amid the sufferings of human beings.
The homilies on pandemic of Pope Francis; the poem “Lockdown” by Brother Richard Hendrick (Ireland) opened my mind, not closed in fear, but through my small window, trying to feel environmental changes: bluer skies, less noise and smoke, birds singing; trying to see humanity and the solidarity evident everywhere.[I]
The sense of belonging to CND was strong, thanks to the caring messages from CND sisters around the world.
A time to reflect and believe in God, and what God was teaching His children.
A time to reflect and believe in God, and what God was teaching His children. The desert times like the prophet Elijah, moving from fear to feeling God’s nourishment and consolation, to realizing the presence of God.
July to October 2020
The pandemic is still getting worse and worse in the Philippines ...
Fortunately, I have the opportunity to attend Daily Mass in a small chapel of Benedictine Sisters. That is a great consolation.
A new trimester has begun with academic work and with new experiences of online education.
Feeling the kindness of classmates and professors who always care about my situation – ‘the foreigner friend’.
Observing the ways education in the world has adapted to the pandemic situation with the support of technology; and then, seeing the inequality in education around the world. A lot of children have no access to education in this challenging time. The idea of building an inclusive education that includes everybody becomes clearer and stronger within me. “We can only build the future by standing together, including everyone” (Pope Francis).
The whole world is preparing for the ‘new normal’ after the pandemic. I remind myself everyday with the words of Pope Francis: ‘The only way out of the current crisis is all together' and as disciples of Jesus, “allowing ourselves to be guided by faith, hope and charity” .
Never live like before the pandemic but live more fruitfully and meaningfully: a mind that never stops learning, a heart that feels and a life transformed.
[I] September 23, Pape Francois to the general public