In April of 2020, in the third week of the pandemic, Ann Palmerton wrote a blog about wearing masks. She wrote:
At the Last Supper, Jesus said to his disciples, “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another” (John 13:34). These days, one way we love one another is to wear a mask when we leave our homes. We wear masks to protect other people. Love asks that we wear masks to protect others.
Love is once again asking us to wear masks. Even those of us who are vaccinated are being asked to wear masks. That is the request of a coalition of children’s hospitals across the country who took out full-page ads in Sunday’s newspapers calling for everyone to get vaccinated and continue to wear masks. Kids under 12 who are not eligible for vaccines are particularly vulnerable at this time.
I’m guessing that if Jesus walked the earth today, he would be wearing a mask. Because he really wants us to be healthy. When you sit down and read the gospel accounts, Jesus’ focus on healing is impossible to miss. He is consumed with the physical health of people: curing blindness, leprosy, and paralysis. I am convinced that Jesus’ heart breaks over the 4.5 million people who have died from Covid-19 and the continuing devastation of this pandemic.
As people of faith, we are called to do our part to alleviate suffering. Wearing a mask is a small good thing we can do at this challenging moment, something that contributes to the health and well-being of our entire community, especially the children.
I end this blog with the same blessing offered by Ann in 2020:
Adapted from Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand
On my own
what I have to give
doesn’t amount to much
in the face of so much need.
Put together as a congregation,
what we offer you in love
not simply added together,
but somehow multiplied in its usefulness.
We ask you to bless the gifts of masks and elastic,
and all our gifts, so that with the addition of your blessing,
just as it was with the loaves and fishes,
there is enough for all. Amen
Besides getting vaccinated and wearing masks, what can we do to help keep children safe and well?
-written by Rev. Amy Miracle