March 4.   Lucky explained to the family that leprosy in those biblical times was like HIV/AIDS was for us. She told the story of Namaan, a highly-placed foreigner, a proud and arrogant man, who suffered from leprosy. When he asked for help the prophet Elisha treated him with some disdain and just sent a message for him to go and wash in the Jordan river. At first Namaan was too proud but he listened to his servants’ advice and having washed found that he was cured.  He came back, thanked Elisha and acknowledged the greatness of the God of Israel.   There are psychological issues around serious illnesses like leprosy and HIV/AIDS, even more so than Covid-19, that affect the one infected and those affected in families too. Everyone has a right and responsibility towards one another to deal with the condition in the most life-giving way for all.  Illness is a serious reality in animal and plant families too.  Do we consider how they suffer, or only think of the inconvenience to us?   

Reflect, share. Scripture: Read the relevant scripture passages.  Elisha sent a messenger saying, “go and wash in the Jordan seven times. But Naaman was angry and went away, saying, “Behold I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord.” Kings 5:1-15.  Pope Francis: If the family in the light of the faith accepts the presence of persons with special needs they will be able to recognise and ensure the quality and value of every human life with its proper needs, rights and opportunities. AL 47.  LSAP 1. Response to the cry of the earth.    Pray a Lenten prayer.  “All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures.   You embrace with tenderness all that exists.  Pour out upon us the power of your love that we may protect life and beauty and cherish the worth of each being. Laudato Si.  Choose an appropriate action.