Saturday, May 30, 2020

Christians, Coronavirus, and a Christ-Centered Response

How we respond in times of uncertainty may offer a greater opportunity for growth and an opportunity to witness to others.

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Today’s news cycle is dominated by one thing: the rise and spread of the novel coronavirus.

First reported in Wuhan, China on December 31, 2019, the virus COVID-19 has made an impact on our world, from international travel to the global markets. Coronaviruses are actually common throughout the world and generally “cause mild illness like the common cold.”[1]

However, this new strain has proven to be far more dangerous than a cold, with 82,000 cases worldwide and 2,800 deaths by late February. As of February 25, 2020, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports the virus has spread to 37 locations internationally, including the United States. The CDC said this about the U.S. involvement as of February 25: “Person-to-person spread of COVID-19 also has been seen among close contacts of returned travelers from Wuhan, but at this time, this virus is NOT currently spreading in the community in the United States.”[2]

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak a “public health emergency of international concern” on January 30.[3] WHO and the World Tourist Organization (UNWTO) are working together to communicate recommendations regarding travel or trade restrictions. In sports, some have begun to wonder about the future of the Tokyo Olympics this summer.

The WHO also has a site with three main headings: When and How to Use Masks and Advice for Health Workers are two of them.[4] The third is Myth-Busters, because our information-frenzied culture is great at spreading news and terrible at filtering myth from fact.

There is talk of a possible pandemic. There is the expected blame-gaming of politicians, turning a health issue into a political football to be kicked around. Facebook, …

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