CMR Quarantine Life: Kansas City Community Edition
I work as a DRE (Director of Religious Education) so I was able to work from home and work on things involving the CMR-US Region. The other three Sisters work in the nursing field, so they still leave the house. Our community functions without much change with 5:30 A.M. Morning Prayer followed by Communion service. The nurses on day shift leave around 6:25 A.M. and return at 8 P.M. The Sister on night shift leaves home around 6:45 P.M., returns at 8 A.M., receives Holy Communion, and goes to bed. With these varying schedules, the sisters livestream the Mass whenever they are free.
On Sundays and feast days, we livestream the Mass from Cathedral of Immaculate Conception (in downtown KC). Whenever we run out of the Blessed Sacrament, we ask to attend the parish mass and receive another 100 hosts.
We have definitely grown in appreciation more the sacraments of the Church as well as the practice of spiritual communion. We pay more attention to taking care of one another.
It is God’s will for us so we accept this time gracefully and obey all the guidelines from the state, the city, and the local Church. I know I live with three nurses who work in the hospitals but I do not worry. I focus on keeping the house clean, cooking good food for my sisters, and sanitizing the house before I go to bed. We also have a large garden and yard so a lot of work needs to be done. This keeps us healthy and busy.
THE BAD & UGLY (OR NOT?)
As four perpetually professed sisters, we have weathered through more difficult times than this pandemic. So, we do not see this time as having particularly bad or ugly effects.
We pray for the many souls who have gone to heaven, their grieving relatives, the hardworking nurses, doctors, and people on the front line. Our hearts are touched deeply and we offer prayers of thanksgiving for those who have put their lives in danger for others. The pandemic may be bad and ugly, but in fact, the people are beautiful and are very much appreciated.
In the convent, life is not as convenient as before. We think twice before we go to the store to buy things. However, we do not worry about what to eat, what to wear, or what others might say about us. We gently remind one another to wash our hands for 20 seconds.
During this time, we call our families and other CMR communities more often. We also pray for the healing of coronavirus victims every time we pray the Divine Office.
We are reminded that time in this life is relatively short. Thus, the best use of our time is spending it in Love and serving God and Others. When “our time” comes, may there be a great welcome ceremony in heaven for a job well-done by the handmaid of the Lord.
Social distancing reminds us of our spiritual closeness and the favors we received from those on the “front line.” Their goodness reminds us to pass this goodness on to others too.
God is closer to us in this time than in ‘normal times’ because we are more conscious of the closeness of God’s presence in our lives.
From Top Left: The KC community enjoying gỏi cuốn together; Right: Sr. Marguerite distributing communion; Bottom: Sr. Eileen "masking" up for work
Live-streaming Mass from Cathedral of Immaculate Conception in the chapel