Fighting the Virus -Ten things you can do if you find yourself locked down at home

Even though Mumbai has not been locked down over the corona virus, I have chosen self-isolation making an exception for the public celebration of the Eucharist (which continues in Mumbai) and for all pastoral needs. We as pastors need to shepherd our flock and that includes the use of prudent measures.

But this is also a great time for the family to get together and for you to spend some ‘me’ time. Look at this time positively. Here are some things that I have been doing and so can you.

  1. Use this time to learn something new. I have always loved to make creative posters; I just did not know how to do that till I was introduced to Canva, a great ap. I have been using this time to work on a talent that I wanted to develop.

  2. Cook up a storm and if you don’t know how to then learn. When I was a seminarian I came across a priest who was terrified of turning on the gas. This led to a ‘hands on seminar’ for the priests and the seminarians. Since that course, culinary skills have gone on line and you can learn to make any thing by just goggling it. I have also been posting some recipes on my blog and Facebook. Recently I made a spicy vegetarian kheema vindaloo using granulated soya.

  3. Isolation means everyone is indoors and that’s a great time for the family to bond. If you have card games or board games pull them out. Find some activity that can get the whole family together.

  4. Clean up your personal spaces. In jest I often think I suffer from OCD; and I mean this as no offence to those who do because it is a huge psychological struggle. The point I am making is that most of us barely have the time to pay great attention to keeping personal spaces like drawers (a luxury for developing nations with limited spaces), cupboards and rooms clean.

  5. This is a great time to clear the dining table of decorative articles and use it for what it is meant to be. If you don’t have a dining table make the floor your picnic spot. Use this time to cook together and eat together. Turn off the TV and let the chatter begin

  6. Catch up on some rest. Your immunity is always built up with rest. Doctors recommend at least seven hours a day. However you will need to fight the temptation to slumber out the rest of the day.

  7. Create for yourself a daily flow chart. This will help you structure your day rather than flutter it away. It will also limit the number of hours you spend like a potato couch in front of the TV.

  8. Pick a book and read and if you don’t have a book then there is a lot of stuff online. The danger is that we often feed our minds with forwards on Facebook and Whatsap. There are many good audio books that you can listen to.

  9. Pick up your Bible and search online for a good commentary to do some personal Bible study. I have many articles on scripture on my blog pottypadre.com. There is no dearth of faith based knowledge on line. Keep a highlighter besides you and mark away your Bible each time you come across something that strikes you.

  10. Pray pray and pray as a family. This is a great way to fight the virus and connect us once again to a life of prayer as a family. This is one element that has been lost in many homes. It may be a bit challenging to get everyone together to pray but do remember, everything that is difficult is not impossible. Get the family together giving them fair warning as to what time the family rosary will be said. This helps you negotiate the ‘urgencies’ that always prop up at prayer time.

Finally, stay safe, stay close to Jesus and do not fear. God loves us and we will face this virus together in prayer and love.

Fr Warner D’Souza

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