More and more of us are getting vaccinated. And that is a good thing. Our hopes and prayers are for a resumption of in-person school (and church) and for a gradual re-creation of the freedom we enjoyed together. Many of us, via the vaccination, are receiving the medicine for our bodies that enables this, but what about medicine for our souls?
We have been hurt over the last year with the relentless pressure of feeling un-safe, the sharp pain of grief, and the dull ache caused by the absence of all those people and activities we miss. We keep ourselves going day to day by noticing, and being grateful for, moments of hope and kindness. But many of us are emotionally drained and soul-weary. The rise in mental health issues and domestic abuse, the increase in grumpiness and cross words both on and off-line, are evidence of a collective malaise that goes beyond the material and physical.
I have found myself profoundly moved by the sight of medical staff offering jabs amongst the arches and ancient stones of cathedrals across the country: salvation offered in the clear liquid of a vaccine in the place where salvation is more usually offered in bread and wine. The Christian ritual of communion gathers its participants around the story that that the Source of Life and Love comes to us, bringing the healing and freedom that is balm to the weary and battered soul.
Medicine for our souls will also come, in time, from being able once again to connect with others and express love and friendship unmediated by technology and unafraid.
I wonder what does ‘salvation’ look like for you at the moment? And where do you look for medicine for your soul?