Care for Neighbour

Posted: September 11, 2021 by Ty in Spirituality
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Fatigue can set in having the same conversation that lands on stones over and over. It feels like the proverb of entertaining a fool, or the gospel parable of seeds that fall upon the rocks. Yet that is where we are at in this moment in time in Canada. A place where rock/pebbles can be pelted by protestors at Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau, with threats to assassinate, and folks look to blame him. Where anti-vaxxers in Alberta are protesting hospitals, yes hospitals, barring access for patients and slowing ambulance responses. Ambulances that are already in crisis, and the regionalization of 911 has not aided in. Where farm supply stores have to keep livestock dewormer locked away and have one provide proof of ownership because people are literally drinking it, because the internet said it treated covid (because who wants to listen to science). Where health care, human service and educators are faced with constant abuse for trying to aid and help, burning out and yes, we are losing good people in the field, as Government policy provincially has targetted them as not essential. Students angry over having to prove vaccination (as well as other workers)…led me into a dip of despair as I entered my morning contemplation.

My Morning meditations brought me to these two passages from my tradition:

Do to others as you would have them do to you.-Luke 6:31 (New International Version)

A poster on my kitche wall, that I got after seeing it in the dining hall of the FCJ Christian Life Centre dining hall on retreat.

36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus said to him, “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the greatest and the first commandment. 39 The second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 Everything in the Law and the Prophets depends on these two commandments.”

-Matthew 22:36-40 (New Catholic Bible)

Which led me to this sermonette on Facebook emerging from these passages and reflecting on c-tine:

21. That is how many in my circles have gone to the Great Tea Party during c-tine. 21 I will never see again in this life. 21 ranging in age from 12-82. 21 who some I found out about while teaching real time online, and then went back to supporting my students to success. Some gone due to covid, due to isolation, due to other health issues, due to inability to access care due to covid overrunning our system. 21 who brought joy to others life. 21 who I honoured and celebrated on my own because we could not gather and share laughter, love and tears… and why does this matter? Simple, I cannot believe the amount of selfishness and self-entitled privilige within our world, inability to mask, to distance, to vaccinate…truly an inability to care for one another. Those that slam religion saying its atrocious, but live into their own hedonism, those who are religious that have missed the point of their sacred teachings and need to revisit what it means to treat others as you want to be treated, within my own tradition to love your neighbour. Do not use your name for the Holy to hide your own folly.Our interdependent (because in the Commonwelath, we are not independent) rights are precipitated upon communal responsibility. Family and friends in health care and human services, being abused by those suffering who refuse to be vaccinated, protested, threatened, burning out, and yes this includes educators. Gaslit by those who encourage the division and misinformation at the highest levels.And now, communal responsibility is being asserted as it should have been months ago, and the outcry…mandated vaccination for those who are able has always been a thing, my son gets vaccinated because in his community he can to protect the many of his buddies that can’t. Serving the majority of my life to aid others, I have been mandated many times to take vacinnes and testing to keep those I serve and my colleagues safe– Meningitis, Flu, H1N1, TB testing, STI/HIV testing, Anti-retrovirals when possibly exposed, proving I received my childhood vaccinations, and the list goes on…The virus is doing what anything does in nature, mutates to thrive or die. We have an opportunity to have it die or at the very least shut down the thriving, but do we have the capacity to actually give a damn about someone outside ourselves?

As my family journeys through Ezekiel, a major prophet in the Hebrew Bible (due to the fact it is a longer work). My youngest chose, what does Ezekiel do? He points out to the nation essentially where they have forgotten the other. They have made life completely about themselves, their own greed…and the destruction this leads too as community is forgotten, and the consequence for that is a brutal exile of loss and devastation. The call back to what it is about… are we able to answer the call back?

Are we able to give a damn about others?

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