Prayer of Reparation to ask for Mercy and Divine Help
15 March 2020
We have heard many things in these days, and the important thing here right now is the Eucharist, so I will be very short.
In these last weeks, all the world changed. Everything went upside down. All that we are used doing… everything changed. The market, transportation … everything is paralyzed. Everything is in a kind of a global war.
Even in our Church, we had to change all our traditions. Most importantly, we cannot celebrate the Eucharist, which is the heart of our life as Christians. And in many places, we cannot even receive the Eucharist, something totally new for us and that we didn’t see even in the period of war.
We are living a strange Lent; we are living in a kind of a very long Holy Saturday. The Day of Silence, in which there is nothing, no celebrations… nothing.
Only two short considerations:
First, I want to go back to what we said in the beginning of Lent on the Ash Wednesday. At the beginning of Lent, we said that we are dust (polvere), and we see now that we really are. We want to have control of everything in the world and a small Virus destroys everything. We found ourselves powerless. All that we built, all our strategies, collapse. We see that we do not really have power over ourselves, we are not the owners of our lives. So in this context it is important to go to what is essential. Work is essential, activities… all these things are important, of course, but we forgot that our life is not just here, on this land, in what we can control in this life. Our life is, and we are built for, Eternity. We are built for something that is beyond… We need God! In Him we live the Eternity, in Him, the God revealed in Jesus Christ. We live in Love. In Him we experience the meaning of Hope. Hope is not the same as optimism. Hope is the ability to give a meaning to what we are living in the present life.
Second thing: so what to do now? Only one thing we have to do. Among all the other things, one thing we have to do: to pray! Not just prayer, but we have to start to do again what our fathers did, and we have forgotten. To pray together in family. We cannot go to the Church, we cannot go to the work, we have to be closed in our houses, and I suppose there are a lot of things to do at home, and a lot of opportunities: Internet, television… but to find a moment where the family switches off everything and pray together. It is an occasion, since usually in regular life, we are always here and there, we do not meet to be together, to eat together. But also to give together a space for God. The prayer in family will give new life to our families and will heal many of our wounds.
Also we have to think and pray for all those who are affected by this Virus, but also the many others who, because of the Virus, remain without work, without perspective in their future, thousands of families everywhere.
I conclude that this is an occasion, and in this occasion we, as Church, as diocese all together we have to work in order to find ways, where through prayer and charity we support each other and express our Community in one heart, in the prayer as I said, and by sharing together what we have. May the Lord bless all of us. Amen.
+ Pierbattista Pizzaballa
Apostolic Administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem