“The old year runs away from me, I hang onto her sleeve but she shakes me loose…” (J Rupp)
We are beginning a month named after the Roman god Janus, an appropriate image for the start of New Year 2021. This particular Roman god of transitions, of new beginnings, had two faces, he could look ahead towards the future and back at the past at the same time. This could be representative in our global world today.
We have walked through life-changing events this past year that caused all of us to become familiar with pandemic restrictions, loneliness, disconnection, missing the touch of other people, not to mention the hard partialities of employment and educational insecurity. We have all experienced COVID fatigue and weariness, both of the disease itself and its ramifications for individuals, families and society. There is no going back to ‘normal’, to the way things were. Life is different now. We cannot conceal our vulnerability, nor the fragility of our lives physically, emotionally and economically. The pain has brought many to their knees, with the only place to look to is heavenwards.
The beginning of January gives an opportunity to walk into another year of life with hope and trust in our hearts. It gives us space to rearrange our inner world , to ponder, to consider, in the light of 2020, what spurs us on to live our dreams and rekindle a positive attitude. The pandemic hasn’t taken away compassion, curiosity, friendship, neighbourliness, love, the natural world or spirituality. Our challenge is to recognise the small beautiful things that happen in our lives daily and carry joy and hope to those we meet.
“We discover our greatness when we find ourselves in a situation bigger than we are and we manage to grow and become bigger than the situation. (Luigina Sgarro)
Liz Hartigan, RNDM