It’s a whole year since the first national lockdown started. In some ways it seems like only a short time ago, and in other ways it seems like eternity since we could last live our lives without any of the current restrictions. Each of us has a mix of feelings and memories from the last year, and they will all be different depending upon our circumstances. Some caught Covid and know what it is like; some were distressed when a friend or relative had it and they couldn’t be with them; some lost loved ones to Covid; some lost loved ones to other things, but they weren’t able to see them or be with them because of the restrictions; some worked long, hard hours; some put themselves at risk serving the rest of us; some were furloughed and unsure if their job would still be there; some lost their jobs; some have faced serious financial problems; some have desperately missed seeing family; some would like a break from living on top of each other; some had struggled to balance work and child care; some have struggled with mental health issues; some have slipped back with their education; some have discovered new interests and hobbies; some have been totally bored; some have discovered countryside around them; some have spoiled countryside around them. We could go on. It is a year that has touched all of us in many ways. Some have managed to look for positives and new priorities, some haven’t. We wish it could all end today and we could go back to the old ways, but the chances are that we will have to live with some restrictions for quite a while to come, and that the ‘old normal’ will not come back. It is a time to remember, and reflect, to think about what we have learned and what we would like to do, and look around us and see what we can do to help others, and the wider community to address the pain and wounds of the last twelve months
Lord, as we reflect on the last year, maybe silence is better than words. We give thanks for all the kindness, the care, the commitment shown by so many people. Help us not to focus on blaming people for this or that, but instead think about what we can do to help address the pain and wounds of the last twelve months.