Of Promises and Uncertainties

by Francis Miguel Panday

When confronted with a great amount of uncertainty, we could barely think of anything, or we could barely think, at all.

When the threat brought about by the pandemic spread all over the news, who among us did not experience this profound disorientation? Despair?

“How, then?” “What now?” “How will I explain to my children that tomorrow, we might not eat?” “How do I tell myself, that, ‘hey, it’s okay’?”

But as the running cliche about this episode of our lives, it only brought out the best and worst in us. It is a time of people sitting together, bound together with shared feeling of hopelessness.

If we look closer, our bond with others was our despair. It has gone to be a public experience. It was bad, but we are in it together.

How much worse it is then, to someone, fighting his battles, alone? No one knows he’s sick. No one knows he had lost a friend. No one knows he committed a mortal sin. Imagine the isolation.

Let me tell you a story.

As the virus fortifies, a medical frontliner caught it, and being of medial discipline, assumed he should be spared of the worst.

He isolated himself, underwent further tests, got cured, and eventually tested negative. But as the virus continues to prowl the air. On his bed, this frontliner started feeling unease, physically and mentally.

He thought he was in control of the situation, but there was no way he could be certain.

As the days went by, and the patient got wasted and began to have doubts. Had he been missing something big in his profession? Will he still be able to recover? Was he on his death bed yet? Nobody knows.

Did he resort to the security of his expertise because he was screwed? Or was he just so certain because all his life he was saving lives, that he held on to it without further reassurance?


Today’s Gospel is about a promise in the midst of uncertainty. Jesus left a promise to the Apostles about the coming of the Holy Spirit, the Advocate.

Today’s Gospel is about a promise in the midst of uncertainty. Jesus left a promise to the Apostles about the coming of the Holy Spirit, the Advocate.

Running from the religious authorities, from the state, His disciples could not easily be drawn from a single promise. Their hearts must have been filled with fear, with anxiety, with doubt.

But the Lord did not promise without knowing what he was promising. He appeased them with the gift of peace, of reassurance.

The easter promise is a promise of certainty that He will be with us until the end of time; that however strong the feeling of fear takes over us, the Spirit is with us to secure us peace that provides solace in the face of disorientation, promise of new possibilities, and confidence in His power over us all.

Many of us are now in crisis of faith. Doubt can be a link as strong as certainty. But when you feel lost, know that you are not alone.

*photo from catholicharboroffaithandmorals.com/

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