Chaplain’s Corner – Junior School

Like many of us in our city, the thought of six weeks of Stage 4 lockdown filled me with despair. I grieved for the restrictions to my own life, my own way of being, as well as for those thousands in our city who would lose more than their freedom to exercise. I found it hard to feel motivated to go into battle.

And then, a friend of mine who is a gifted writer penned this reflection and it reset my perspective. By the time you read this, we are well into our forty days, but I hope and pray the words bring you comfort and fortitude. May God bless this Community at Carey during these days.

Forty days
of Stage Four Care protocols for one another

Forty days
of living out a radical hope that we can save at least some from suffering and death 

Forty days
of measures to draw us into thinking and acting as a community

Forty days
of finding out if we think one another are worth it

Forty days
that will be more costly, more difficult, more stressful, more taxing, more depleting, more impossible for some than for others

Forty days
in which our deep inequalities are laid bare

Forty days
in which our dark anxieties and dysfunctions will be challenged

Forty days
of a spiritual discipline – not for the sake of lent or an out of whack northern hemisphere medieval ecclesial calendar, but the real spiritual life of shared connectedness, in which we are all

– whether we like it or not –

Premier Dan, 
and Bunnings Karen,
and our healthcare workforce,
and the elderly in aged care lockdown
watching death work its way around the corridor,
and the immuno-suppressed,
and those in industries who haven’t had a shift since March,
and those homeless,
and those in long life-patterns of domestic violence lockdown

Forty days
in the midst of two and half thousand days in detention for asylum seekers

Forty days
in which finger pointing is pointless

Forty days
of covenant with one another,
with those who have the least
resources, hope, choices, support

Forty days
in the wilderness together.

Forty days
for real

by Beth Barnett

Janine de Paiva
Junior School Chaplain