Awaken to a Life in Christ
The Essential Role of the Laity in the Church Today
In this year of our Lord 2022, what is your experience of Church? Unquestionably, COVID-19 has shifted the reality. We have experienced the lockdown of churches for weekend Masses. It’s now common for Sunday celebrations of the Eucharist to be livestreamed in every corner of the globe. When congregations were allowed to reestablish in-person meetings, many people preferred to continue with virtual celebrations.
Even with the reinstitution of the Sunday obligation to attend Mass in person, many people, particularly the elderly and infirmed are cautious of new COVID-19 variants and choose to continue watching the livestreamed Masses. Activities that required in-person participation by laypeople—such as retreats, discussion groups, Bible studies, and mission trips—have been drastically curtailed or shifted into digital platforms when possible. People who never used social media before are becoming adept at using meeting platforms. Much of the world has become enmeshed in a virtual realm.
We are emerging into new experiences, new ways of “being Church.” What does that mean? What will that look like in the near future and for the long term? Does it call for a change in how the laity see their role in the Church?
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