A Spiritual Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

It’s dominating the headlines, minds, and hearts of the world. There’s so much uncertainty and fear from COVID-19 and its impacts across the globe. Rather than give in to anxiety, we can respond through the eyes of our Catholic Faith.

Memento Mori

The unknown can be scary, disease and death can be frightening, but our faith tells us that death is not the end. When we are faced with situations like coronavirus, they can be an opportunity to consider our mortality and the inevitable end of this earthly life.

“I think this is a good reminder that this is an important part of Christian spirituality that nobody likes to talk about. The memento mori, remember death. You’re going to die; there’s no two ways around it. And that sounds grim, but the saints of old when they found out they were about to die their attitude was like, ‘Oh boy!’” explained Fr. Richard Simon, speaking about coronavirus on The Drew Mariani ShowTM.

Be in a state of grace

Patrick Madrid also gave some advice to those who are watching the news and wondering what will happen. “How bad will it get? I don’t know. I wish I did know. But I do know one thing … regardless of what may be happening and how bad it may get … just remember to always be in the state of grace. That’s the key right there—just be in the state of grace. Jesus said, ‘In the world you will have tribulation’—and maybe this is part of the tribulation that Jesus was referring to—‘In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world.’”

In this earthly life you never want to be caught unaware or unprepared. We never know when the end of this life will come, and Patrick recommends that if you are not prepared, you use this coronavirus outbreak as an incentive to get there. You have nothing to fear, he says, “if you’re in the state of grace, if you are going to Confession on a regular basis, if you fall into mortal sin you quickly get out of it and make a good, purposeful amendment not to fall into mortal sin again.”

The end times?

When disasters occur and diseases ravage the earth, many people wonder if they are signs that the end of the world is near. But rather than worrying about tomorrow, Fr. Simon says that we should focus on today.

“You live a day at a time and if you wake up tomorrow morning, it will be today. And you do your best in each day and it’s all you can do. You love the people God’s given you to love in a day,” explained Fr. Simon.

Our preoccupation with what might happen keeps us from living out God’s plan for our lives today. “C.S. Lewis makes the point that the Devil wants us to live at any moment except right now,” remarked Fr. Simon. “If he can get us to live in the future, he can keep us from living today and this present moment is where heaven meets earth, where I can do good, I can hear from God.”

Lindsey is a wife, mother, and contributing author at Relevant Radio. She holds a degree in Journalism and Advertising from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Lindsey enjoys writing, baking, and liturgical living with her young family.