Christianity and COVID-19
Image: Chelsea Stahl / NBC News
Christianity and COVID-19
COVID-19 and all that has happened in its wake are about much more than a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic. It’s about more than maintaining one’s health or preventing the spread of disease. COVID-19 has laid bare a great human failing – self-centeredness.
Our namesake, Bonhoeffer, spoke of centering the “other” and not ourselves in all of our ethics, behavior, and, even theology.
The Apostle James expressed it this way, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their suffering . . . ” (James 1:27) In the ancient world, widows and orphans were emblematic of vulnerable persons.
In Paul’s epistle to the Philippians, he writes, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3)
Wearing masks, practicing social distancing, getting vaccinated, and encouraging others to do the same, centers others and places their wellbeing above our own comfort. Simple and meaningful actions like these can mean the difference between life and death for the most vulnerable among us and are an opportunity to live out the essence of Jesus’ mission – to be for the other, even at the expense of oneself.
ICU Nurse Chrissy Odean exemplifies a Christian ethic of others before self. In this new episode of Schenck Talks Bonhoeffer, Odean talks with Rev. Rob Schenck and explains, in harrowing detail, why it is so important we all selflessly comply with safe practices during this pandemic.
Chrissy Odean is a second career RN, BSN licensed in the District of Columbia and Virginia. She started a nursing career in the ICU and is now working in the cardiovascular pre/post-procedural area, after having served ten years in the non-profit sector with employment in the U.S., and overseas as a public health missionary.
Explore More About COVID-19 and Christianity
Arise Together – A free book from Pastors and Christian Leaders in America
Arise Together includes chapters from twenty pastors and leaders in the USA, including Rev. Rob Schenck, during this Covid-19 pandemic. The nearly 200 pages aim to capture what God is doing and what He is teaching us in this moment of crisis.
When Your Whole World Changes – A devotional by the Humanitarian Disaster Institute and Biblica
Based on excerpts from the Bible, this book brings unique perspectives to the experience of anxiety and suffering in the face of the global pandemic. There are 30 devotions that help people explore their emotions in the light of what God has to say about crisis and disaster situations.
COVID-19 Guides and Handbooks for the Church
The Humanitarian Disaster Institute has created downloadable resources for Christians to use during the COVID-19 pandemic including, “Coronavirus Church Planning Template” and “Checklist for Church Members Returning to In-Person Services.”
An initiative by the Health and Human Services Department to increase confidence in COVID-19 vaccines and reinforce basic prevention measures.
“What Can We Do About Evangelical Anti-Vaxxers?”
A blog post by TDBI President and Founder Rev. Rob Schenck about his commitment to Evangelicalism and world health.
See also: “No Legit Vaccine Exemption For Evangelicals”