One of the unexpected consequences of the need for us to shelter at home and avoid all social gatherings is having a great deal of unstructured time in what is usually the busiest times of the year. For me, given my very busy pace of life, it is quite jarring to have so much time is now free from travel and ministerial obligations. I woke up this morning and asked myself: how can I best use this free time? Perhaps you have asked yourself the same question.
At a minimum, we now have extra time to spend in prayer each day- prayer that is sorely needed to seek eternal repose for the dead, to remember those who are sick and living in great fear, our health care workers who remain on the front lines of this disease, and for one another. We may never again have a Lenten season that affords us so much time to give to the Lord. Let us use this time wisely and well.
I would also suggest that you and I can revisit our Lenten promises and see if there are other things that we can do in our homes to prepare our minds and hearts for the celebration of the Paschal Mystery. For my part, I have added the daily practice of the Stations of the Cross, which gives me great comfort and consolation. To meditate on the Lord’s passion and death each day by praying the Stations reminds me that He is here with us, in this hour of suffering and fear. He will walk with us as we carry our own crosses, especially in this time of uncertainty.
We will be facing many challenges in the weeks ahead. However, we now have an unexpected time to spend with the Lord. It is a gift that we should not waste.
The previous reflection originally appeared on Bishop Frank Caggiano’s Facebook page. Follow the Bishop for daily reflections and weekly videos.