Living into Jesus’ command to us to love one another as he loved us this Maundy Thursday, we pray this blessing on all the healthcare workers in our community, their families, and healthcare workers everywhere.
Blessed be your hands.
Blessed be your hands so accustomed to washing, and feeding, and bandaging, and holding, because it is what you have always done.
And blessed be your hands that tremble and shake when you don’t know what to do, now.
Blessed be your hands, washed and scrubbed, washed and scrubbed, washed and scrubbed raw because you care so much.
Remember: You are suffering, too. You get to have compassion for yourself.
Blessed be your eyes that will weep, tears of overwhelm and exhaustion, of fear and grief, of relief and gratitude. These are healing tears. They are not to be excused but encouraged.
And blessed be your eyes that see above and through masks, eyes that let those who are feeling isolated and afraid know they have not been forgotten.
Remember: Your hard work in this time of fear and not knowing will not be forgotten.
Blessed be your heart, whose walls continue to push oxygen into all your cells so that you can breathe, and you can move, and you can share your gifts of healing with those who need them most.
Blessed be your heart, that it will not grow numb with fatigue but stay open to all of the suffering to which it bears witness.
Remember: Your heart might break because you dared to care, but you are not alone in the breaking.
Blessed are you, you who didn’t sign up for a pandemic but did sign up to keep showing up for the healing and wellbeing of all people under all circumstances.
Blessed be your health and wellbeing, and that of your loved ones, and all whom you hold in your heart as you go about your days.
Remember: You are blessed, you are appreciated, and you are loved.
Written and shared by Rev Laura Shatzer, to the staff at Barbara McInnis Hospital, where she has served as chaplain for the past several years.