Bishop W. Nicholas Knisely of the Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island put it right on the table at the outset of our conversation. “This strikes me as one of those epochal moments in our history,” he began.
He shared with me his unique and reflective view of how the coronavirus is disrupting lives and institutions. For all of us, the pandemic “turns up the volume” on pre-existing situations like difficult relationships or financial worries. (You can read more in his latest blog post.)
The same is true for churches, who are shifting in different ways to serving people virtually. Bishop Knisely struck a positive note on how people have responded; with more people participating and more representative voices at the table, “we’re not going back” to in-person-only.
“I find that I’m remembering junior high a lot.” That was how the bishop launched into an excellent coping strategy recommendation. (You’ll have to listen for the details.)
He touched on the human toll of this pandemic, describing the many parishioners who have lost their jobs in industries that will not come back quickly. Bishop Knisely called on the church to keep those people front and center as we move forward.
And he spoke with great love about prayer.
(One last note: My apologies to Bishop Knisely and other astro-physicists everywhere for confusing astrology and astronomy. Yes, I really did that, and I’m sorry.)