The Response begins…
It has almost been a month since Fr. Leonard Chiti, SJ, Provincial of Zambia and Malawi launched the ZAM Jesuits C-19 Appeal. As a response, a number of activities are already being done by Jesuits and their collaborators. For example, the feeding of frontline health workers with a hot meal at Levy Mwanawasa Teaching Hospital, University Teaching Hospital and Courtyard hotel. The logistical preparation of food hampers and masks to be distributed to the poor and vulnerable is underway and almost complete. With 15 volunteer counsellors already identified, permission granted, pastoral Care and psychosocial Counselling will be available for the frontline doctors and nurses who have been overwhelmed with the increasing number of COVID-19 patients.
Despite all these interventions, the number of cases globally stands at 5,5 million and 920 and 101 in Zambia and Malawi respectively. Though there is a call to live the “new normal,” fear and anxiety has become the order of the day. An imminent threat from the virus, apart from the economic effects, is mental damage, growth of selfishness and a rise of cold-blooded relationships. People are in constant fear of losing their jobs and others especially young people without jobs are losing hope of getting one.
This first issue of the ZAM Jesuits C-19 online Newsletter starts with a belief that we must live in hope because choosing hope is what God asks of us. When we choose hope, we choose thoughtful ideas that lead to meaningful action. Our writers, Jesuits and their collaborators share some reflections and raise important questions on various issues surrounding COVD-19 in Zambia and Malawi and the damaging effects this pandemic is having on people especially the poor and the vulnerable. Though we admit that we do not offer succinct solutions to the cure of the disease and the damage it is causing but through these reflections, it is believed that questions raised can help our policy makers be moved to meaningful actions that will avert the suffering of the poor.
We will be very happy to receive your suggestions and feedback on how we can improve this Newsletter. Send your feedback to:
Every blessing and keep safe,
Fr. Kelly Michelo, SJ
ZAM Jesuits C-19 Task Force Coordinator
Society of Jesus Zambia - Malawi Province , P.O. Box UNZA 46, Great East Road, Lusaka, Zambia.
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