THE CHURCH IN PANDEMIC TIMES
God's time is providential, always. During these times away from the church we are striving to get to know more about our Church. This web page is made to help you get informed about several topics of the Church, find resources, and continue with the Evangelization Mission.
With the example of Venrable Carlo Acutis, this page is managed by the young adults of St. Joseph, Fontana.
EVERYONE WANTS TO GET TO HEAVEN, FEW ARE WILLING TO DO WHAT IT TAKES TO GET THERE.
- BROTHER ANTHONY FREEMAN
There is no better time to be Saints. These words have been with me since this whole quarantine thing started. I heard these words from our Coadjutor Bishop, Alberto Rojas, at his Welcome mass back in February. In his homily, he said these words, and at that time I was like, okay, sounds fair. I didn't quite understand how relatable these words would turn out to be. However, now, it's a different story.
Churches have closed to the public. Shopping malls, restaurants, DISNEYLAND is closed. Society has closed. What is happening? The virtual world has now taken over and its not a bad thing, definitely not a bad thing. I mean, in our own church we see it. The church is able to continue reaching out to the people by live streaming mass and other services. Technology has allowed for all of us to be connected during this time and continue to be part of our church.
I want to share a very important person with you guys, his name is Carlo Acutis, or better said, Venerable Carlo Acutis. A young boy from Italy who passed away at the age of 15 from leukemia back in 2006 with an extraordinary testimony. "From the day he received his First Communion at the age of 7, he never missed an appointment with daily Holy Mass...Carlo was very gifted with everything related to the world of computers so that both his friends and adults with computer engineering degrees considered him a genius. Everyone was amazed at his ability to understand the secrets of computers that are normally only accessible to those who have specialized university degrees. Carlo’s interests involved computer programming, film editing, website creation, editing and laying out small publications, to helping those most in need especially children and the elderly. Carlo, like many adolescents of our time was busy at school, with his friends, and for his young age was an expert in computers. In the midst of all his commitments he encountered Jesus Christ."
I first read about Carlo when Pope Francis' "Christus Vivit" Apostolic Exhortation was published. Pope Francis talked about him and I was left amazed by his life. What amazed me the most was that this young teen lived in my lifetime. Sometimes we can think that sainthood is something that can't be reached anymore because we have only heard of saints of past centuries, however we don't realize that we are called to be saints today and it is so very possible. Many young people go about trying to find themselves in this world, but that's pointless. We are called to find God, and we don't belong to this world, we belong to Him. We find Him, we find ourselves, we find our purpose because who better than our Creator to tell us what He created us for? Carlo proves that sainthood is possible in our time. He is an example to us, but just an example because like he himself said : "All people are born as originals but many die as photocopies”. We cannot continue to live as photocopies of someone else. It's so easy in this world of superficiality to fall into this trap of wanting to be like someone else and even modifying our appearance, our style, our likes and dislikes to be like someone else. That's a waste of time and that's not God's purpose for us.
We can take Carlo's example, of using technology and computers to God's service, but the world doesn't need another Carlo Acutis or another Mother Theresa, the world needs one of you and only you can give the world that. God created you for a purpose, are you fulfilling that purpose? Have you even asked Him what that purpose is? There is no better time to be saints, than right now. Right now when people all around us are relying on this virtual presence of the Church to reach them. Right now when people might be afraid, might be left without hope, it is time to be part of the Church, to be part of the Body of Christ. Now more than ever, there is no better time to be saints.