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Books

The crisis, the world, the Church

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30 April 2021

As the whole world continues to suffer the human, health, social and economic consequences of the epidemic, five Xaverian women religious reflect on how to live today in order to better begin the world “thereafter”. Geneviève Comeau asks where is God in times of crisis. Odile Hardy examines how the Covid-19 crisis can be a favourable time. Agata Zielinski imagines a motto for this time of crisis: vulnerability, freedom, complexity. Noëlie Djimadoumbaye questions the ecological consequences of the crisis. Nathalie Becquart, appointed by Pope Francis as undersecretary of the synod of bishops last February, examines how the crisis can be a call to experience the Church differently. “Through this lingering crisis, with a new wave that is testing our patience”, she writes, “We must face up to a real change in the world, which also changes our Church”. In what way? Nathalie Becquart delivers several elements for an answer. “Perhaps we have better understood the constitutive dimension of our ecclesial being”, she observes, “Which needs to come together in a concrete place to celebrate. In the long run, we can’t live our faith alone and only through the internet”. Moreover, in the face of worsening poverty, “in this time of pandemic that calls for solidarity, for the gift of self to love and serve others, we can more than ever ask for and receive the grace to experience this movement of offering, of oblation of ourselves day after day”. 

Finally, Becquart notes, at a time when people experience a certain solitude that accentuates polarisations, “synodality is an antidote against isolation that helps us appreciate the goodness of human community. Walking together is not always an easy task, both for the Church and for society, but we must all exercise this practice that is so vital for the future”. 

By Marie Cionzynska

Nathalie Becquart , C’est maintenant le temps favorable, cinq regards de femmes sur la crise [It is now the right time, five women's views on the crisis], La Xavière - Éditions de l'Emmanuel