This is a guest blog from our main partner Christian Aid.
God is love. It’s a truth of our faith, and one that perhaps we have leaned into more during these uncertain times. We read throughout the bible that this love is steadfast, that is never ceases, that it is long and wide and deep, that it is transformative and active.
There is huge comfort in the love and God, yet there is also huge challenge, as it compels us to live out love in an unjust world.
The church has expressed the love of God in these difficult times, reaching out in practical ways to support and advocate for communities locally and globally. Although church buildings have been closed, the role of the church has never been more important.
As we emerge from this crisis, we are challenged to rethink the way we live.
Impacts of Coronavirus
Through this coronavirus pandemic, economic, financial and health systems in every society have been stretched and the poorest and most marginalised people have been hit hardest.
Covid-19 has claimed many lives. It is spreading fast in poorer regions of the world. And the economic fallout from the pandemic has – in many cases – been greater than the health impacts. As a result, over 500 million people could be pushed into poverty. Meanwhile the climate crisis continues to escalate.
The impacts of the pandemic fall hardest on those most vulnerable – it has exposed (and deepened) inequalities, reflecting fundamental failures in how our world is ordered. We’ve seen that whilst Covid-19 does not discriminate, societies do.
Around the world, it is the most marginalised groups, that have been especially vulnerable to the virus and to its economic fall-out. And everywhere, the pandemic threatens to entrench disparities between women and men, and boys and girls.
Not only are the poorest within societies hit hardest, but the lottery of your birthplace impacts how you experience this crisis. It’s no secret that there is a gaping inequality between countries. This has been exemplified by the resources available to cope with the pandemic. Richer countries have coped with the worst economic impacts through job protection schemes, support to businesses, and other social safety nets. But poorer countries are struggling to respond.
We must acknowledge and lament the state we’re in, reflecting on what God might be revealing to us or inviting us to do through our own experiences of the pandemic.
Hope and possibility
Yet throughout the pandemic the possibility of a new way is emerging. We have seen love bring communities together, we’ve seen people rediscover our deep connection with God, each other and the whole of creation and we’re also glimpsing the benefits of living in increasing harmony with God’s creation.
Christians have often been central to moments of profound social renewal. We can play a huge role, speaking prophetically to society at large, casting a vision of a better world and encouraging or challenging those in power to build back from coronavirus with love and justice at the heart of God’s world.
Christian Aid invites you to use our building back with justice resources. Take time to reflect and discern together how you and your church will live out the deep, wide and extravagant love of God and be part of mending our broken world.