Silver Lining #4: A Happy Easter I won't forget
One of the reasons I love living in Columbia is Sacred Heart, that spectacularly beautiful church on the corner of Waugh and Locust – across the street from the Pres Rez. Every Sunday morning, while I’m walking the puppies, I watch the Sacred Heart congregation arrive for Mass, and I’m reminded in such an inspiring way of the importance of community and the power of faith.
Easter at Sacred Heart is all of that -- and more: The church parking lot and surrounding streets fill up with cars, the sidewalks and steps are crowded with families, and the fashion and finery -- from patent leather shoes and Easter bonnets to dashikis and brightly colored head wraps (dhukus)...It's the best Easter parade in town.
But not today. Today, the bells chimed as always -- at 8:30 and 11. But the Church stands empty and signs taped to the doors announce that services are suspended until further notice.
This Easter, they’re congregating online. And yes, it's exactly the right thing to be doing . But this morning, it seemed like such a loss – not just for them, or for me, but for all of us.
And then I looked across Locust Street, right around the corner from Sacred Heart. It's a construction site: A battalion of guys dressed in florescent-orange hoodies are building a new version of Locust Street School, cinder block by cinder block, day after day.
And Saturday, before they headed home for their own holidays, somebody or somebodies left a message behind:
Why do I think they wouldn’t have bothered a year ago? Maybe because they wouldn’t have felt like they needed to – and this year, they did.
So thank you, construction crew, for getting out the spray paint and wishing your neighbors well. And thank you, too, for reminding me that community isn't about a building or a parade: It's about random acts of kindness and care. And those are happening everywhere we look, in ways we couldn’t have imagined they would.
And that’s a silver lining to all of this chaos that we won't soon forget.