Taiwan is an island in the southeast of China. The population is about 24 million inhabitants. Due to its proximity and business, many Taiwanese people live in China, so it was thought that COVID 19 would strongly affect the Island. Prevention measures have been immeasurable since ...
Since laborers from the Indian subcontinent started coming to Fiji under the colonial indenture system (1879-1914), the small number of Catholics among them brought a strong devotion to the Italian Saint Anthony, a Franscican friar of the twelfth century.
As I write this article, I am safely sheltered in the U.S. Columban headquarters in Bellevue, Nebraska. Since I am approaching the celebration of fifty years as a missionary priest, I decided to leave Chile for a few months and do a sabbatical program at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas. Unfortunately, the program was interrupted because of the coronavirus pandemic.
As a humanity. we thought that we had reached a point of development or a point that we could control all situations with economics or the power of our governments. However, this year something that is still out of our control happened. Its a thing that we cannot see or touch but is there bringing to us a lot of uncertainty or destabilizing our lifestyles, That thing has a name, Covid-19. This small virus is causing events that not even the most expert economist in the world could have predicted. The reason why I have started this article with these lines is because the ones who will suffer the most when we overcome this crisis are the poor and the oppressed, which are a priority in our church.
When the Corona pandemic started people thought it was just a passing experience and within a few days’ things would go back to normal. The reality today is far from it. After hearing word that a lot of people within our community were losing jobs and families were going hungry, one of our parishners wanted to start a “Olla Comun” or “Soup Kitchen” as it is called in English to help feed families who can’t afford it.
There are some people who do not believe the existence of the intangible things in the world. In the Philippines, the number of the Coronavirus patients has dramatically increased since the beginning of March 2020. That is why the President Rodrigo Duterte’s Government has imposed the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) over the entire Luzon area. However, the local situation is quite different now.
How many times has someone climbed a mountain only to find that they are still not at the summit? And, in fact, a cliff lies between them and the higher peaks. Throughout history, humanity has passed through different crises such as wars, natural disasters, and epidemics. Because such calamities can bring us face to face with the limits of our existence, they can have a huge impact on humanity. In our current situation, we are facing a force which we cannot see,or control, and this invisible virus has brought us to an existential cliff. We thought that we had things pretty much under control, the economy was strong enough for us to live well, spending our time searching for the latest phone or best television.
Covid-19 has been the trigger for a dramatic downturn in an already stuttering global economy with many economists suggesting we are headed not only for recession but a ‘greater depression’. What is one person’s recession is another person’s depression especially when it hits my home, my finances, and results in the loss of employment.
As the news of the Wuhan virus started if felt like another MIRS or SARS virus outbreak. With time it will pass, I thought. Little did I realize that it was soon to be a pandemic. If it were biblical times it would be called a plague: it was and is. The whole saga became existentially real when the virus broke out in a cluster at a pseudo Christian church in Daegu city.
If you were a young idealist thinking about a worthwhile career, the ongoing struggles with coronavirus and its media coverage might push you towards the caring professions or science as worthwhile options. Even if you are not a fan of the ‘heroism’ card, it is difficult not to be impressed by the pivotal role the medical and scientific communities are playing in the ongoing coronavirus drama. If you needed encouragement to jump into nursing, science, or similar, the past few months have certainly provided it.