Here is a link to the blog post discussed in this piece. Charles Demers' April 29 blog was also published in the June issue of Topic the publication of the Diocese of New Westminster that is printed 8 times a year and circulated by mail as a section of the national publication, The Anglican Journal. Many thanks to the Reverend Adela Torchia for her comments...EDITOR
In the June edition of Topic I was delighted to read Charlie Demers' insightful piece called "God Didn't Send COVID-19". And yet it's not wrong, as he says, to turn to God to make sense of things. Demers cautions us not to waste this opportunity for reflection and change: "it would be worse to come through a crucible like this unchanged, having learned nothing". He speaks of our "global society which has made an idol of the profit motive" and how that contributed to our COVID-19 vulnerability. It was also good to learn from him about Karen Armstrong's intriguing non-literal reframing of the Exodus story, with the possibility that instead of the 40 year geographical journey, it may have been "one socioeconomic class' relatively short distance exit from exploitation" perhaps simply forming "a loose confederation of hilltop peasant communities". Changing how we view a long familiar narrative can help expand our perceptions so that "as we consider the present plague besetting our Egypt, we can imagine an escape to the Promised Land ... as an insistence upon doing things differently." And he ends by pointing out that this Exodus has already started in all the extra caring and sharing inspired by the virus. "It means that we begin to see selfishness clearly again; not as the engine of innovation, but as a tyranny." Demers' smooth interweaving of cutting edge theology with socioeconomic and personal development themes - is an inspiring response to COVID-19 reminding us that crisis and opportunity are two sides of the same coin.