Again, my dear Reverend Fathers, your shoes are big and that cross is heavy, and this virus and the hysteria and panic caused by the media does not help, but look at these men once again, your role models, modern day Patron Saints who offered the Latin Mass and the Sacraments and Spiritual Direction under fire, in POW camps, in the depths of the USS Oklahoma in Battleship Row in Pearl Harbor under siege during the air attack, and Father Capodanno, in the jungle of Vietnam with all the weird diseases, creepy crawling things, an intense enemy who fought a guerrilla style warfare, yet Father Capodanno didn’t stop his prayer services, Mass, Sacraments.
Be like the Priests creating confessionals on their front porch, or drive through confessionals, or live streaming their Masses and having a screen made available outside the parish or available on tablets or laptops on a website and then the people in their cars waiting for the Blessed Sacrament.
We are at Passion Sunday, getting close to that holiest time of the year of Holy Week. As President Trump is calling it, a war with an invisible enemy, so you my dear reverend fathers are wartime chaplains, no time to run from the fight and leaving your flock behind.
If you need a Saint to look to, Saint Charles Cardinal Borromeo
“Everything began in the month of August that year. Milan was celebrating joyfully the arrival of Don John of Austria, on his way to Flanders, where he had been appointed governor. The city authorities were abuzz with excitement in their desire to bestow the highest honours on the Spanish prince, but Charles, who had been Archbishop of the diocese for six years, was following with concern the news coming from Trento, Verona and Mantua, where the plague had begun claiming victims. The first cases exploded in Milan on August 11th, right at the moment when Don John of Austria arrived. The victor of Lepanto, followed by the governor, Antonio de Guzmán y Zuñiga, departed the city, while Charles, who was in Lodi for the Bishop’s funeral, returned in haste.
Confusion and fear reigned in Milan and the Archbishop dedicated himself completely to assisting the sick and ordering public and private prayers. Dom Prosper Guéranger sums up his infinite charity in this way:
“In the absence of local authorities, he organized the health service, founded or renewed hospitals, sought money and provisions, decreed preventive measures. Most importantly though, he took steps to ensure spiritual help, assistance to the sick and the burial of the dead. Unafraid of being infected, he paid in person, by visiting hospitals, leading penitential processions, being everything to everyone, like a father and true shepherd” (L’anno liturgico – II. Tempo Pasquale e dopo la Pentecoste, Paoline, Alba 1959, pp. 1245-1248).
St. Charles was convinced that the epidemic was “a scourge sent by Heaven” as chastisement for the sins of the people and that recourse to spiritual measures was necessary to fight against it: prayer and penitence. He rebuked the civil authorities for having placed their trust in human measures rather than divine ones.
The magistrates who governed the city continued to oppose public ceremonies, out of fear that the large gathering of people would spread contagion, but Charles “who was guided by the Divine Spirit” – recounts another biographer – convinced them by citing various examples, among which was the one regarding St. Gregory the Great who had halted the plague devastating Rome in 590 (Giussano, op. cit. p. 266).
While the pestilence spread, the Archbishop then ordered three general processions to take place in Milan on the 3rd, 5th and 6th of October, “to placate the wrath of God”. On the first day, the Saint, despite it not being the Lenten season, placed ashes on the heads of the thousands gathered, exhorting them to penitence. Once the ceremony was over, the procession went to the Basilica of St. Ambrose. Charles put himself at the head of the people, dressed in a hooded purple robe, barefoot, penitential cord at his neck and large cross in his hand. In the church, he preached on the first lament of the prophet Jeremiah Quomodo sedet sola civitas plena populo, affirming that the sins of the people had provoked the just indignation of God.” Please Continue Reading The Account At