A Note To Fellow Pastors Regarding Coronavirus
It appears that a crisis rapidly coming our way and may already be here. I think we do well to know what to expect, and to plan for our response as pastors.
Beyond the obvious items of disinfecting and so on, there are others to consider:
Some people are already suggesting the suspension the Eucharist, and even of worship itself until the crisis is over. How will we respond? Especially knowing that the church is the final refuge of men when all else shows itself empty. We saw this following 9/11.
There will likely be additional demands on pastors to visit the sick, and perhaps bury the dead.
There is the matter of safeguarding our own health lest illness strike down the shepherd, and the sheep are scattered. Also of infecting our own families when we come home. The risk is there; and medical aid may be hard to access.
This crisis may degenerate into civil unrest on small or larger scale. Consider the person who coughs in public. Will others view him as a threat to public heath? Will they say or do things they would not otherwise do or say?
I think we would do well to prepare a stock of prayers, devotional readings, hymns and other of our mighty resources such as the Creed and Lord's Prayer with their explanations, Collects for the sick and for tumultuous times that we have in our Service Book and Pastoral Companion.
Further, we will all need the prayers of the church, the support of one another, and an extra measure of the Holy Spirit to see us through.
3. Though devils all the world should fill,
All eager to devour us.
We tremble not, we fear no ill,
They shall not overpower us.
This world's prince may still
Scowl fierce as he will,
He can harm us none,
He's judged; the deed is done;
One little word can fell him.
Peace in Christ