Cardinal Dolan Offers Reminder Of God’s Presence in Crisis

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Cardinal Dolan told viewers in an NBC “Today” show interview March 23 that “God is with us,” and encouraged them to turn to their faith for strength as people in the United States and around the world battle through the coronavirus crisis.

Cardinal Dolan offered words of solace from the Bible during the interview with host Hoda Kotb.

“That’s God speaking to us and I remember his words, ‘Be not afraid, be not afraid,’” the cardinal said. “I remember the words of Jesus, His Son, ‘Fear is useless, what is needed is trust.’ I remember the prophets of the Hebrew Scriptures who say it’s easy to have trust and to skip through life when things are prosperous and peaceful and healthy, but we really need to exercise the faith muscle at times of adversity, which is what we’re going through.

“Don’t you hear a lot of people say that given the tribulations all around they still dig deep down and they find strength internally that they didn’t know they had, they find strength through other people and most of all they find confidence and peace through God.

“Those three sources of faith are coming through in abundance today. We might not have enough facemasks. We might not have enough ventilators, unfortunately. We do have faith, trust and confidence.”

Cardinal Dolan also reminded viewers about what faith really is.

“Faith, as the Bible tells us, is confidence in things that we really can’t see, promises made that we trust are going to be fulfilled,” the cardinal said. “So even in the best of times when we’re in church participating in the sacraments, we’re trusting in something that cannot be seen. That’s the essence of faith.”

Cardinal Dolan was asked if there was a universal prayer that people of all religious faiths could say during this crisis.

“I don’t know of any religion that would take exception to this prayer,” Cardinal Dolan said. “Dear God, You are our Father. We are your children. We trust you to take care of us and help us take care of one another.”

In closing, Ms. Kotb asked Cardinal Dolan to pray for longtime NBC News audio technician Larry Edgeworth, 61, who died last week of complications from the coronavirus.

“May his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed who have been lost during this crisis rest in peace. Amen,” said Cardinal Dolan.

Cardinal Dolan celebrated Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on March 22 and 23. In his Sunday homily, the cardinal discussed John’s Gospel where Jesus cured a man born blind.

“We are all spiritually blind,” the cardinal said. “We are all born in the darkness and Jesus alone is the light of the world that can cure that darkness that all of us have.”

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