Do not let a pandemic stop your celebrations…connect virtually

News Article / December 22, 2020

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By Lieutenant-Colonel Jean-Sébastien Morin, Command Chaplain of the Royal Canadian Air Force

As we enter the Holiday season, faith traditions throughout the world mark this sacred time with festivals, rituals, and celebrations. For many of us, it may also represent a privileged time to reunite with family and friends, taking some well-deserved break from our busy work lives.

Therefore, this holiday season will likely not look like any other time we have gathered to celebrate. Not only has the COVID-19 Pandemic changed our lives these past nine months, it will continue to impact us and our families in the weeks and months to come. The way we celebrate will likely be very different than ever before as we learn to do so at a distance from one another.

That being said and despite the challenges in front of us, the pandemic does not need to stop us from our celebrations. Technology can help us to stay connected: Virtual dinners, services, or simply chat times. Or, perhaps we might take this time to purposefully reconnect with oneself, to examine what is truly important in life, to consider what is sacred for us personally. It may also be the occasion to keep it simple, relax, recharge, and engage in things we usually do not have time for, like a hobby or a good book. The next couple weeks can be privileged time to revisit our personal priorities and focus on self-care, to get well.

Remember, we are entering the time of year when the sun slowly begins to gain time over the night. As the light shines brighter through the days, we too can search for a light that will inspire us and give us hope and strength as we approach a new year.

Again, it is important to stay connected during this time and I encourage you to do so. You are not alone. Should you need support or assistance during the Holiday period, you can easily access the variety of resources the military offers. These include the Duty Chaplain, the Canadian Forces Member Assistance Program, Canadian Armed Forces Health Services, etc. Do not hesitate to reach out.

May you and your family have a safe and blessed holiday season. May your 2021 be filled with hope, joy, health, and peace. 

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