As I have been watching the nightly news, it is heartening to wait for the final segment that inevitably tells of the goodness in people and how so many are helping all of to weather this international outbreak. I was especially touched by Steve Hartman’s segment on CBS “Kindness 101,” in which he set up an online class in which students could share their gratitude for people in their lives. Here is my litany gratitude, based on petitions I hear at Eucharist and at the Divine Office and what is revealed in the news.
–Thank you, God, for the New York Police Department members, and be with those who have tested positive for Covid-19, because they have helped others.
–Thank you, God, for paramedics, nurses, doctors, and respiratory therapists on the front lines of caring for patients with the virus and given them the tools they need to bring healing.
–Thank you, God, for those standing by windows and cell phones to accompany loved ones as they lie dying.
–Thank you, God, for military personnel assisting with food distribution and carrying bodies to the morgue.
–Thank you, God, and be with those who are experiencing loneliness from being enclosed in their homes.
–Thank you, God, for volunteers in food banks, on lunch lines and in vans delivering good to the homeless and those, who have recently lost their jobs.
–Thank you, God, for lab technicians and scientists searching for those with antibodies to assist those suffering from the disease.
–Thank you, God, for those praying night and day for our world, its peoples, animals, and environments.
–Thank you, God, for world and local leaders, who make hard decisions to protect their people and experience heartache in the process.
–Thank you, God, for all the restaurant owners, cooks, and others donating food to hospital personnel.
–Thank you, God, for all those facilitating peace in trouble homes, neighbors, villages, and nations.
–Thank you, God, for all those clapping for our medical personnel to thank them for their service.
–Thank you, God, for all those sheltering in place because of their love and concern for loved ones, neighbors, and strangers.
–Thank you, God, for those providing prayer services, messages of hope and video connections to sustain us all at this time.
–Thank you, God, for Pope Francis and his blessing for the world.
–Thank you, God, for the thousand acts of kindness being done by ordinary people.
Perhaps you would like to add to this litany, which is by no means exhaustive and only a beginning.
Blessings to you all!
Sister Mary Forman, OSB
Monastery of St. Gertrude