“The community of believers was of one heart and mind, and…they had everything in common.” (Acts 4:32)
Today’s reading from the Acts of Apostles has always been an inspiration to me. I dreamed of a community where all shared their goods and goals, and all collaborated to achieve them. This reading is especially inspirational given the current social distancing and quarantine. This past month we have witnessed an estimated 22 million become unemployed, food bank lines of hungry people, loss of businesses and thousands of people dying from COVID-19.
I see evidence of this passage being lived out during this horrible worldwide pandemic. We have witnessed doctors, nurses, healthcare professionals, first responders, front line caregivers, risking their lives to save lives. Of “one heart and mind” includes truck drivers, postal workers, grocery store workers, and teachers. We have witnessed people donate money for masks, face shields and ventilators and farmers giving their crops to food banks. Business leaders and entertainers have come forth to donate millions to food banks around the world.
The dream of the early Christian community lives on in religious communities such as the Passionists and lay movements within the Church. This dream is of God and every attempt to live this dream, even during the time of a pandemic, is a sign of God’s kingdom. (Living with Christ, April 2020, Today’s God News, Paige Byrne Shortal, p. 114)
Lord, help me to respond to those who are in need today.
Carl Middleton is a theologian/ethicist and a member of the Passionist Family.