Much has happened since our last edition, which arrived in homes by early April. Myriad events are condensed into a single word.
Our daily lives have been dramatically altered. Many of us know people who were sick or who died. Friends and family have lost jobs. We’ve have been stuck at home for months.
Our parish lives have changed. We were unable to attend Mass in person for most of this time, although as of press time, parishes were beginning to have public Mass again, albeit with limitations and modifications.
But the Church is the same. No matter how we might alter the way we approach the altar, and regardless if we’re more likely to make a spiritual communion than receive Holy Communion, the Church and sacraments instituted by Jesus Christ remain the same. And God’s grace is the same.
This month, we honor the 50th anniversary of Archbishop Robert J. Carlson’s priestly ordination. In his half-century as a priest, he’s seen plenty of change. He served in 10 parishes and four dioceses. Yet in all that time, he’s maintained the heart of a priest, and the indelible mark of the Sacrament of Holy Orders has remained the same.
We feature the work of Dr. Marie Paul Lockerd, a Religious Sister of Marcy of Alma, who changed from overseeing the Rural Parish Clinic to caring for retired priests at Regina Cleri who were impacted by the coronavirus. While her work changed, her caring ministry has remained. She and Regina Cleri are able to care for the priests because of the generosity of the Annual Catholic Appeal.
Our immediate future might feel uncertain. It’s easy to be anxious about how social norms might change, perhaps permanently. We might be distressed, even distrustful, about the differences we’ll likely face.
But we find comfort in the Church’s remarkable consistency and God’s enduring grace to guide us through a changing world.