These days we can’t help but be aware of the anxiety around us.  People are worried, about the COVID virus, the crashing stock market, having to stay at home and who will take care of them if they get sick.

We are anxious when states of emergency are established that limit us to staying at home and limit our freedoms.  We are anxious when people don’t listen and we hear that enforcement measures can and will happen.

First responders are anxious about going to work.  EMS are finding themselves answering more and more virus calls and all the extra trips are taking their toll.

People with parents in nursing homes or hospice are anxious about not being able to be with them.

Home Health care workers are concerned about how they will manage their case load and remain healthy while at the same time keeping their clients healthy.

Doctors, Pharmacists and Nurses who are in direct contact with the sick and vulnerable are concerned about their own health, and are exhausted as well.

Speaking of exhausted, Provincial and Federal Health Officers are feeling the strain.  Prime Ministers, Premiers and Mayors are struggling to manage all the tasks they have to meet local needs and respond in a timely manner to emerging needs.

While I have been praying for peace, and comfort for all.  Patience for all.  Help for all.  Rest for all.  And while I still pray for that, I am growing more and more convinced that we need to pray for protection for all.

Protection from the virus.  Protection from exhaustion.  Protection from the unrealistic expectations of those of us who want everything done for us now.  Protection for all of us who watching from the outside anxiously waiting for the next shoe to drop.

So let us remember that God is still God.  Let us remember that God still cares for us and watches over us.

And with that complete confidence in God, let us join together in St. Patrick’s Breastplate, that great prayer of protection that reminds us we are surrounded by God on all sides.

 I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.
I arise today
Through the strength of Christ’s birth with His baptism,
Through the strength of His crucifixion with His burial,
Through the strength of His resurrection with His ascension,
Through the strength of His descent for the judgment of doom.
I arise today
Through the strength of the love of cherubim,
In the obedience of angels,
In the service of archangels,
In the hope of resurrection to meet with reward,
In the prayers of patriarchs,
In the predictions of prophets,
In the preaching of apostles,
In the faith of confessors,
In the innocence of holy virgins,
In the deeds of righteous men.
I arise today, through
The strength of heaven,
The light of the sun,
The radiance of the moon,
The splendor of fire,
The speed of lightning,
The swiftness of wind,
The depth of the sea,
The stability of the earth,
The firmness of rock.
I arise today, through
God’s strength to pilot me,
God’s might to uphold me,
God’s wisdom to guide me,
God’s eye to look before me,
God’s ear to hear me,
God’s word to speak for me,
God’s hand to guard me,
God’s shield to protect me,
God’s host to save me
From snares of devils,
From temptation of vices,
From everyone who shall wish me ill,
afar and near.
I summon today
All these powers between me and those evils,
Against every cruel and merciless power
that may oppose my body and soul,
Against incantations of false prophets,
Against black laws of pagandom,
Against false laws of heretics,
Against craft of idolatry,
Against spells of witches and smiths and wizards,
Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul;
Christ to shield me today
Against poison, against burning,
Against drowning, against wounding,
So that there may come to me an abundance of reward.
Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.
I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.