St. Charles Borromeo Administering the Sacrament to Plague Victims, by Pierre Mignard. Creative Comm
Here you will find a chat room transcript with lots of talk about how we are coping with the sufferings of the coronavirus, as well as other topics.
This week’s discussion centers on the Spiritual Conferences of St. Francis de Sales, as well as our choice between eternal love and eternal death, a men's Bible study outside a prison, attending Mass via livestream, adjusting to stay-at-home, new telepsychiatry law in NY, and friends stuck in southern Italy.
Check out our Living Jesus Chat Room of the Visitation Sisters. Join us! We read a passage of St. Francis de Sales and then gather at 7:30 pm ET each Sunday online. Great insights and sharing!
Visitation Sister: Pressed with stuff because of virus in NY; lots going on here.
Visitation Sister: Last chat for the Treatise too.
Caroline: It is so incredible how fast this is moving.
Caroline: People are losing jobs, and I still don’t get what’s up with the T.P.
Denise: Hi…in Cali together. Hope you are safe where you are. And NY is alongside of CA in terms of outbreaks, NY maybe worse.
Caroline: We are all tucked away inside. It’s unusual to have so much rain in March, but it’s making it easier to stay in.
Denise: Are people remaining in their homes there, Sister?
Visitation Sister: No, not all are cooperating, and the governor is very concerned.
Visitation Sister: This is the last chapter of the Treatise.
Caroline: What should we read together next?
Visitation Sister: One possibility is Spiritual Conferences, but I’d like to hear your ideas on that!
Visitation Sister: We had talked about the Sacred Heart one time, but please offer a suggestion!
Caroline: I like it all!
Visitation Sister: Hoped you liked the Treatise.
Denise: Would you explain a Spiritual Conference?
Visitation Sister: It is a series of talks St Francis de Sales gave on a variety of topics.
Caroline: Ben! How are you? Are you able to continue Kairos?
Ben: Hi Caroline! No, we are unable to go in for Kairos, could be for a long time with the current situation!
Caroline: I was afraid of that Ben. Are you able to at least call in.
Ben: No, we cannot call in just have to keep praying for the Kairos Community local and around the World!!!
Caroline: Oh, Ben, I am so sorry. It is such a critical time for them too.
Ben: They are a Strong Christian Community! They will help each other through this, and we will help each other through this difficult time!!!
Visitation Sister: Prisons under lockdown like hospitals - can’t visit nursing homes.
Visitation Sister: It’s terrible.
Visitation Sister: Italy is not giving respirator help to those over 60.
Caroline: I had not heard that. How terrible for the people and those that had to make that decision.
Visitation Sister: We are all on the cross, the same cross!
Visitation Sister: United in the Body of Christ.
Caroline: United to our Lord.
Ben: Amen, Sister Susan!!!!
Ben: May use Chatroll to continue our Men’s Bible Study Sister!!!!
Visitation Sister: Great idea, Ben!
Visitation Sister: There is access to computers then.
Ben: This is our Men’s Bible Study outside Prison has been going very well, studying Gospel of Luke.
Visitation Sister: Our courage and faith are surely being tested these days.
Ben: Amen, Sister!!! We Must Trust God!!! We can do all Things through Christ who Strengthens Us!!!!
Visitation Sister: Question 1: This has been a long ride going through the Treatise. What stands out to you as a major takeaway from the overall book? Is this a book that you would return to someday?
Denise: I think both Treatise and True Devotion are important to add to library.
Denise: Though I do not have a spiritual director really, the Holy Scriptures and writings of St. Francis de Sales are this.
Visitation Sister: St. Francis de Sales was a great spiritual director.
Visitation Sister: Question 2: Saint Francis says, ultimately, that we have a choice between either eternal love or eternal death. Why do our day-to-day choices not always seem so black and white? How can we better factor this eternal reality into our daily choices?
Caroline: How many of us attended Mass via livestream on the internet? I wonder how many people who haven’t come before saw us and joined.
Caroline: It seems to me so much in the world is gray, that the truth is between two points of view because neither human is totally right or totally wrong.
Ben: I think especially through these very stressful times we get tempted to retreat to the bad choices it is so important to filter our choices through Jesus!!! Without Him we can do nothing!!!
Visitation Sister: Right now, obedience is called for, but so many don’t see it that way.
Ben: Love Joy Peace Patience Kindness Goodness Self-Control and Longsuffering.
Caroline: Prayer and fasting.
Denise: Yes, obedience. Many want to rebel.
Visitation Sister: And lent is all about prayer and fasting and helping others too, so we all have the perfect Lent if we choose to see it that way.
Denise: it is a perfect Lent!
Rebecca: Families that were running in every which direction may come to know one another ... It’s hard for some who are working from home for the first time and homeschooling for the first time, but we have to believe, as St. Francis de Sales says, that what is, is either part of the active will, or the PERMISSIVE will of God.
Jesus’ Death Gives Life
Visitation Sister: Question 3: Saint Francis says that the death and passion of Jesus is the greatest motive for animating our lives. How can we look at this to help us better understand the importance of Lent?
Ben: In Spanish Flu 1918 the cities that isolated did much better. Philadelphia disobeyed advice through parade, gathering 200,000 people, and 2600 people died in a week. San Francisco did well, everyone wore masks. After second round of virus they gave up all good practices. 90 percent of their deaths came at end of virus. St Louis was obedient throughout; they were able to cut off the curve like they talk about in News. Important Lessons for Now ??????.
Visitation Sister: Thanks for this info, Ben!
Denise: Yes, our brain is wired to begin over time second-guessing the seriousness.
Ben: Amen! Temptation to ignore good advice, temptation to abandon good advice and practice, and the fruit of Obedience from good advice!!!
Visitation Sister: Good summary!
Denise: Copying this, Ben!
Caroline: We need to remember that, Ben, as the month of quarantine gets to be too heavy.
Caroline: They initially thought two weeks. Now it is more like two months.
Visitation Sister: Up to 9 says our governor!
Visitation Sister: It could be a long time we are dealing with this.
Ben: Could easily be Year and a half! This virus could mutate like Spanish Flu which had 3 rounds then ended abruptly!!!
Rebecca: When faced with a pandemic, at first every precaution seems excessive; later, every precaution seems inadequate.
Visitation Sister: Another good observation.
Walk with Jesus
Visitation Sister: Has this crisis affected your spiritual walk with Jesus? What can we do to help others at this time?
Caroline: I am loving more time to pray and study. My job still goes on through remote work. Am gearing up to help the foodbank and the local American legion deliver food when the time comes.
Ben: Our Prayers and Faith in God are so critical!!!!!
Visitation Sister: Definitely.
Lydia: As always.
Denise: Small things. I am not able to go out in community even for necessary but here in my community there are small things.
Visitation Sister: I need to leave early tonight to check on the Sisters. Have a great week. We will pick a new book!
Caroline: God bless you, Sister!
Denise: Thank you, Sister, and all the sisters. prayers!
A New Normal
Rebecca: I was actually looking forward to having more time at home! Figured I might have a chance to get caught up on some of the tasks that I’ve been able to attend to only piecemeal. Wish we could each/all have the Eucharist at home, too, but this isn’t the first time . . .
Ben: We are a Quick-Fix Culture!!! This is a major Trial for all, we must Shine for Jesus in all this Darkness and Help Others, Gently Guiding them to Christ!!!
Caroline: We are going back to the beginning and the Spirit will bring us up again.
Denise: Souls being purified.
Ben: Amen!!! We have Brothers and Sisters in Heaven who have been through this cheering us on!!!!!
Denise: Prayer request for Dr. A, traveling ER doc headed to Los Angeles then back here. For what I realized he wanted to speak about, and his protection. Thank you.
Rebecca: I think it should be called physical distancing. My phone has provided more social contact than I normally have. Email, too. And NYS laws have changed to allow “telepsychiatry” from the physician’s home, but a special additional license is required.
Denise: Rebecca, would you be able to get this license??
Rebecca: I’m looking into it.
Caroline: I heard about that. We are using telesales and all the companies are giving special trainings.
Rebecca: It used to be that the doctor had to go to a particular center and do telepsychiatry from there. One time I was at an interview, with the company that was providing the equipment. Everybody together for a demo. They couldn’t get the equipment to work! But technology has improved . . . It’s just that I am rather technologically challenged. And there is no DSL or high-speed internet at this location, in a little mountain valley. Even cell phones don’t work. But the experts may find ways around that.
Denise: For Spiritual direction?
Rebecca: Some friends vacationing in southern Italy when the virus was raging in the north got stuck there; did manage to get home to the US, but what a saga! And they got fined 4,000 Euros for mistakenly thinking they could get on a plane they had tickets for and going out onto the tarmac without permission . . .
Rebecca: The “new normal” will have important lessons for all of us.
Caroline: What a story Rebecca…are they in quarantine here?
Rebecca: Yes, Caroline, but in their own home. Temperature was checked. So far, no fever. She has pre-existing health issues.
Caroline: I will pray extra hard for her.
Rebecca: Will be praying for all of you and for Kairos and Dr. A.
Rebecca: I have a friend being treated for cancer just now, too. The treatment makes her more susceptible to infection. MJK. She helped run the food pantry for the next town over.
Rebecca: Just us again. Denise, did you get a response from Sr. Susan to your e-mail? They have so many elderly sisters, it must be quite a strain on the able-bodied ones. Or if they continue to use outside help for health care, that increases the risk to the whole monastery. So many tough calls!
Denise: Yes, I did. they are in the epicenter.
Rebecca: I’m going to sign off now. If you tried to phone me the other night probably my phone was busy. And tonight, I plan to be on the phone with Miriam, though I am very tired already. What I was planning to tell you, I will put in writing. It’s going to be called TWENTY-NINE. It is nearly a year since that experience, and I promised Sister I would write it up.
Denise: OK, thank you. hope to talk soon and prayers for your rest tonight.
Denise: If you can look back on tonight’s chat there are some interesting insights and points made tonight.
Rebecca: I am always behind schedule. I was here about 10-15 minutes before I typed anything, so I did get to read most (I think) of what was said, at least from Q1.
Denise: Oh good. OK, goodnight. God Bless.
Rebecca: Blessing on you and yours, too, Denise. You are a joy to know. Your simple obedience and prayerfulness are beautiful! A good example!
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