March 23, 2020
As you may have heard by now, the coronavirus struck our seminary in Wigratzbad, Germany a little over two weeks ago. The whole community faced a strict quarantine, and some were forced to spend time in the hospital. In the end, the majority of residents contracted the virus, with one priest and one seminarian still hospitalized.
However, we can share some positive developments. The seminary’s collective efforts at recovery have gone well, and, Deo gratias, they are on the upswing and the number of seriously ill patients has gone down significantly. We thank you for your prayers and beg you to continue to pray for those still in the throes of the virus.
Throughout this trial the residents have been in good spirits as they have worked continually to care for one another and assist one another with the duties of the seminary. The smiles and laughter we are used to seeing from them remain undiminished, those who are in recovery taking over from those who are more seriously sick, the residents bearing one another’s burdens in a very real sense.
And maybe they’ve been smiling even more than usual. After all, we hear that the seminarians have been caring for one another with exemplary dedication and charity, turning an unfortunate turn of events into an opportunity for grace.
“With the mighty help of faith, hope and charity, we are not discouraged,” reads a recent communiqué on the subject.
Certainly they are not wasting such an opportunity to put into practice the virtues in which they have trained themselves. We too have great opportunities to care for one another during these trying times. Prayer is the first support we can give to one another, and even if we cannot see or visit each other with the restrictions in place, we can still call, message and ensure that our friends and neighbors are not in any want. Though weakness and sickness afflict us in body, may our hearts grow stronger in selflessness and charity.
“The invisible threat of illness motivates us to have more confidence in God, and to further increase our prayers and penances,” wrote the seminary. “In union with all the sick throughout the world, and in solidarity with the general concern, we confide very calmly in divine Providence and in the maternal protection of Our Lady, help of sinners and comforter of the afflicted.”
You can follow the seminary’s blog for the latest updates. We again invite you to pray with us for an end to the coronavirus – below you will find the Prayer in Times of Epidemics, which all our priests worldwide are reciting after all Masses. +