Since last March, many of us in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada have faithfully kept away from gathering together in person while meeting virtually for Bible studies and fellowship. As the novel coronavirus pandemic extended our time at home from weeks to months to more than a year, Disciples provided hope for their socially isolated neighbours by preparing and serving meals at a safe distance, hosting worship services on Zoom, and addressing mental health needs.

And in a move of global solidarity, scientists across the world have worked together on vaccines, producing various safe and effective options in record time. We have all witnessed miracles in human collaboration and ingenuity. And as shots go into the arms of older adults, frontline workers, healthcare workers, and others, the end is in sight!

However, as the saying goes, we may all be weathering the same storm, but we’re not all in the same boat. 

At the time of this writing, while 19.6% of the U.S. population is vaccinated, only 2% of Canadians have received vaccines due to a slow rollout. East Asian communities in both countries continue to be targeted in hate crimes due to racist, xenophobic rhetoric. Meanwhile, new strains of COVID-19 are being identified every day.

So as restrictions lift, we all must continue to protect ourselves and others.

After Jesus was resurrected, the disciples didn’t pack their bags and return home, safe in the knowledge that the work was done. Instead, they travelled far and wide and preached as missionaries. The parallels are clear: despite a vaccine, and despite a saviour, it is up to each and every one of us to do the hard work every day that is doing justice, loving-kindness, and walking humbly. 

This blog post originally appeared as the opening letter for the April 2021 issue of New Church Ministry’s newsletter, the New Church Know-It-All.

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