Martin and Katharina Luther were spared from the black plague -- which broke out in the 1500s -- but they did not know this when they chose to stay behind to care for the sick of their community. They could risk their lives to serve others because they were not afraid to die. Their hope was in proper procedures and medical treatments, but even more, it was in Christ. They trusted their Lord to protect them in life and to bring them to heaven in death, whenever it came.
St. Patrick had been raised in a Christian home, but he didn’t really believe in God. But now—hungry, lonely, frightened, and bitterly cold—Patrick began seeking out a relationship with his heavenly Father. As he wrote in his Confessions, “I would pray constantly during the daylight hours” and “the love of God ... surrounded me more and more.”
As concern mounts about the spread of the coronavirus, Church leaders can’t afford to ignore it. This virus has affected the more than 100,000 people who have been infected by it, and millions of others who live and work in affected regions. The spread of COVID-19 has led to thousands of deaths, quarantines, school closures, and large-scale fear around the globe.
But in the midst of every crisis, the Church has an opportunity to show the love of Jesus and the hope we find in him. When things are darkest, that’s when the light of Jesus shines brightest.
Here are 6 ways church leaders can prepare themselves and their churches to respond to the coronavirus in a way that inspires hope and faith in Jesus:
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