For over two years we have existed in a world pandemic on top of political turmoil, war, rising prices, gun violence, racism, and climate crisis. It’s an understatement to say ministering to each other has gotten particularly stressful as we tend to the loss and anxiety in our community. For many people, there is an inclination to do more, to over-function in a futile attempt to fix the problems. However, rushing to provide more programs, workshops or activities will not ease our pain or fear. They are more likely to spiral upward into even more anxiety. And there is the reality, many of us are tired of the relentless emotional stress.
These massive social, political, and economic problems cannot be fixed with technical changes. We are experiencing a high level of fear and loss of comfort, which includes for white people, the long-needed recognition that many people of color in our country, do not have, nor for many, never have had such comfort.
Instead of over functioning, one option is to slow down, pause and give serious consideration to our capacity for energy and attention. Our bodies can only handle so much anxiety before we begin to break down physically and emotionally. It is crucial that we not adapt to heightened fear. It is not healthy or normal to carry excessive hormones and brain reactions to fear. To help bring down this stress reaction, here are two suggestions for all of us; pay attention to our breath, and talk to at least one other person every day about our heart’s joys and sorrows. Each encourages us to stay connected to our bodies and each other.
We are in this crisis for the long haul. What helps us cope is our Beloved Community. It is more important than ever to hold each other’s hearts in our own. Whatever our beliefs are, imagine our sanctuary filled to capacity, we are all singing “Spirit of Life, come unto me ….” Now let our hearts fill with the spirit of life and love. Breath … and imagine being connected to each other.
With love and prayers, Rev. Kate
Care and Connections
- Mary Kostalos is delighted to share the news of her marriage to Michele Maria Gregorich on Friday, May 27.
- Congratulations to Chris Beregi, who graduated this past Friday, May 27, with a Masters in Theology from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and who won the Brooks Foundation Commencement Prize for highest standing in Pastoral Care.
- Our condolences to Stephanie and Mark Pawlowski for the death of Mark’s father following a heart attack. Jerry Pawlowski lived in Florida.
If you have joys or sorrows you would like to share with the community; please send them to Rev. Kate at firstname.lastname@example.org.