Absent for good reason21 December 2015
Lord, I heard Your celebrant today praying for our brothers and sisters ‘who are absent for good reason’.
And they stuck in my mind. I want to find them, to discover them and then send up fervent supplications for them. Who are they, Lord? Who are they who are far away from Your house at the time of the Divine Liturgy?
Certainly there are those who are too ill to attend. Those for whom it’s their heart’s desire, but whose body fails them. The soul leaps at being close to You, in the warm embrace of Your church, but the flesh, sick as it is, can’t consent.
Then there are their companions, the guardian angels of the patients, who, in the hospital or at home patiently stand by with love and serve. Through their love, the patients overcome the needs of human nature, surpass the bounds of humanity and acquire powers they’d never had.
There are others who work shifts, in public services, factories or hospitals, the police, the military, people who serve society and don’t have holidays off. They guard our health, our security, our national integrity.
Lord, remember those who are absent for good reason. Send all of them your Grace as:
Balm and healing for the first;
Patience and courage for the second;
And for the last, strength, stamina, courage, wisdom, protection and shelter.
From the magazine Lydia no. 484, July 2013