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How do we keep the faith under lockdown?

How do we keep the faith under lockdown?

    Its almost 4 months now we are stuck in homes due to lockdown around the country, keeping hope in lockdown is a really big deal. We always spent most of our time outside the shelters for earning and feeding the family, but due to lock down many of us losing hope day by day which is psychologically challenging us. 

  Let’s talk about keeping the faith. Celebrating births and marriages, mourning the dead. Coming together to mark the holidays. They've all been derailed. Sacred sites and places of worship have been closed. No big festivals, no shared meals no proper funerals. 

Whether you're religious or not. 

So how are people coping? 

How do we maintain our spiritual and cultural practices under lockdown? 


what can we all do to stay strong? 

    Some of us choose to navigate through life on our own. But the vast majority of people turn to religion for spiritual sustenance, direction, an community. Especially when times are hard. 

    And this pandemic is one of those times. Over 85% of the world's population considers religion very important in their lives. And so when they cannot gather as a result of the social restrictions of COVID-19, it feels like an incredible loss. Governments around the world have banned religious and spiritual gatherings to contain the pandemic. And with good reason. 

Probably the most notorious example of what they’re trying to avoid is the story of Patient 31. 

     In early February a woman in South Korea developed a fever and went to hospital. She was tested for COVID-19 but before her results came back she attended at least four church services. She even went for a buffet lunch. 

     By the start of March more than 4,000 people were infected — 60% of them were from her church. Easy to see though how just one person can become a super-spreader. April is a big month for religious holidays but this year things had to change. Jews who would normally share meals and prayers for Passover were forced to congregate online. 

“I’m here to welcome all of you to our Website.” 

     Instead of celebrating mass before tens of thousands of worshippers in Saint Peter’s Square Pope Francis live-streamed his Palm Sunday sermon. 

Sikhs usually hold the festival Vaisakhi

    This year they did it at a safe distance. There were other celebrations, too, like the Orthodox Easter 


a Hindu festival called Rama Navami


Ramadan a month of fasting considered holy by 2 billion Muslims around the world. 

    People won't gather together for breaking of the fast to pray in the evenings and they won’t gather together when it comes to Eid, where people come together to celebrate the end of the month of Ramadan

     It’s gone to be a little more different than usual but I think we’ll still have a good time. The faithful around the world no matter what their religion are having to adjust. And congregations are getting creative. Families are re-enacting rituals at home. Many are taking advantage of technology. Or tuning into more traditional channels. Every Sunday now if you want to attend a mass you just turn on your TV and that’s also good. 

   My parents one of the ways to cope with it is their faith and just putting everything in God's hands but right now you know, that’s been a struggle. Others just can’t afford the tech. Those groups that are least resourced may also be the groups that most need religion. And it goes beyond the spiritual. 

    Some people rely on their religious community to make sure they get enough to eat. They might provide economic benefits for people. And they, of course, provide emotional and psychological support. And there’s probably no more difficult time than losing someone. 

   The pandemic has forced restrictions on funerals and burials that defy our universal rituals of saying goodbye. Some cultures are adapting to traditional ceremonies. This farewell to a prominent Maori leader was broadcast on national television in New Zealand. But for a lot of people saying goodbye from a distance or online just isn’t enough. 

    As a family, being together with her would have helped us grieve together for a moment as well which helps you also acknowledge the enormity of what’s happened. It still feels like I’m going to have to wake up tomorrow and ring people and tell them I got it wrong and that she’s still alive. 

   All of this puts spiritual and religious leaders in a tough spot. Many want to provide comfort to their followers but they’re also obliged to stop them from coming together. And that goes against centuries of religious practices. 

    Historically I can't imagine any imam, any leader of a mosque ever having a situation where they have to close the doors of the mosque, which is supposed to be a sanctuary at times of difficulty. The vast majority of religious leaders and scholars around the world are leading by example. But some are breaking the rules. Remember the story about Patient 31? 

    “Some local leaders have called for Shincheonji’s elders to be investigated for possible homicide.” 

   Several church leaders are accused of hiding the identities of their followers from South Korean officials trying to track down cases of COVID-19. Other religious communities have ignored lockdowns too. 

    Large weddings by Hasidic Jews went ahead in New York. Some Muslims in Malaysia kept going to Friday prayers. Mega-churches in US states like Florida and Louisiana were still packed. Bless them, bless them. Put a holy boldness on them. And it’s caused a backlash. 
    None of us have ever lived through anything like this before. Closing more public spaces. “Forcibly separated from loved ones.” Around 100,000 people have died. World powers that are armed for the world’s biggest wars are now fighting for basic protective gear. 

     Lockdowns are already taking a toll on our spiritual and mental well-being. Everybody is having a lot of fear and panic, anxiety. We shouldn't underemphasize the collateral impact those COVID-19 social restrictions will have on our mental health and on our psyche

     So in the absence of a physical connection people are coping the best they can. Utilize technology because getting together and the meeting is really important especially in times like these. It's not from outside. It's from here. 

     What you feel here. Just keep believing, keep praying for the health workers for those who are sick, and for yourselves who are sitting at home safely. It’s in difficult times like this that people turn to their faith and to each other for support. 

It shows just how precious our sense of community really is. 

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