Certainly 2020 will be remembered as the year Covid-19 pandemic gripped the world, and impacted upon the lives of us all. Remarkable stories of faith, achievement, growth and hope have provided inspiration and encouragement to us, despite the lockdowns, and the isolation from our family and friends for many months.
Business, schools, the economy, and our Churches have all been 'holed up'. We have all experienced different forms of isolation, from family, from our loved ones and friends in nursing homes and hospitals.
During this time, our Gospel has encouraged us 'not to be afraid'. Jesus invites us to be strong and constant in the face of life's challenges, because, even when we encounter setbacks, our lives rest firmly in God's hands, whose love for us is always unconditional and strong.
We have become accustomed to virtual reality. Virtual reality has aimed to deliver safe, accessible experiences during the pandemic.
Visitor attractions that we cannot visit during this lockdown, have offered immersive experiences and access to online attractions and collections, such as a walking tour of so many ancient sites, Kenya Safari, or visiting art galleries etc.
We have been fortunate to have online Masses in our Parish, and over 380 people have registered to view these at any time; Sr Manuela who returned to the Philippines on Monday made this service possible.
Online Schooling has been a life-saver to our VCE students and to our schools, I thank the schools, the staff and families for their patient endurance during the two lockdowns this year.
We pray for our VCE students in these weeks ahead as they face their final exams.
This is my final "You and Your Church" article as I retire at 75 at the end of the year, after nine years of being privileged to be Ss Michael and John's Parish Priest, and St Patrick's Nhill.
I thank our Ministers Fellowship for their contributions to the life and faith of our Horsham community, and especially Simon Risson who has been our inspiring leader in my time here.
You will always be in my prayers, may we all come out of Covid-19 with a vaccine that will be life-saving to us all. God bless you.
Did you know you can receive updates straight to your inbox? To make sure you're up-to-date with news from across the region, sign up below.
If you are seeing this message you are a loyal digital subscriber to the Wimmera Mail-Times, as we made this story available only to subscribers. Thank you very much for your support and allowing us to continue telling the Wimmera's story. We appreciate your support of local journalism.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.