The latest NJPN North West Bulletin reflects on living during lockdown. Issues raised include the difficulty of shopping for the vulnerable, having sufficient money to live, and trying to live each day as fully as possible.
Gemma Simmonds CJ considers the ways in which people turn to God at a time of crisis. "The compassion, or suffering alongside, of Jesus amid the scandal of our suffering becomes the strength and wisdom of the faith-filled person. This compassion is most visible over the Easter Triduum, and it calls us all to conversion through the prayer, service and remembrance that Pope Francis commends to us."
Bishop Paul McAleenan has called on the government and Catholic community to ensure that vulnerable migrants and refugees are not overlooked in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic: "In supporting the Government's recommendations to curtail the spread of COVID-19 the Church keeps in mind migrants and refugees. We must never forget that they are included among the vulnerable."
The Catholic Church has also joined calls for the government to tackle the spread of COVID-19 in prisons by urgently releasing some people where it is safe to do. Lead Bishop for prisons Rt Rev Richard Moth said: "The tens of thousands of women and men in our overcrowded prisons are at particular risk from this pandemic. They are no less deserving of safety and healthcare than anyone else in our society."
Prague scholar Tomáš Halík writes about the lessons of the pandemic. He says "Our world is sick. I'm not just referring to the coronavirus pandemic, but to the state of our civilisation, as revealed in this global phenomenon. In biblical terms: a sign of the times. At the beginning of this unusual period of Lent many of us thought that this epidemic would cause a sort of short-term blackout, a breakdown in the usual operation of society, one that we would ride out somehow, and then soon things would all return to the way they were. They won't. And it wouldn't turn out well if we tried. After this global experience, the world won't be the same as it was before, and it probably oughtn't to be.".
And the newsletter provides the insights of young people on our 'Throwaway Society' by printing the winning articles of the Columban Young Journalists' Competition.
The full e-bulletin can be read at:
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