Report from Louisiana: The Covid Quandry

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – Man, people are sick and tired of this Covid thing, hunh?!

I mean, I look back to a year ago: we were preparing to go back to school, many places were still locked down, most places had mask mandates, and here in Louisiana, bars were closed and restaurants operated at 50% capacity. We were still a few months away from a vaccine.

Today, hospitals are once again full, elective surgeries postponed, and case numbers are high and still climbing.

I’m in Louisiana and as of this writing there is no mask mandate. In my part of the state we are about 31% vaccinated. And compared to a year ago, people are living their lives once again: live music is back and concerts are packed with wall to wall people. Baseball is back, no more cardboard cutouts in the stands, and the stands are indeed filled with real people. Restaurants and stores are wide open. School is opening around the country without masks and without social distancing. Barack Obama is even having five hundred people out for his birthday party at Martha’s Vineyard! (Did you get your invite?!) He is, however, having a “Covid coordinator,” whatever that is.

So, what has changed? Our attitudes? Covid fatigue?

I think it is a little bit of all of that. I could be wrong, but I think most of us reject heavy government interference in our daily lives. Isn’t that the very foundation of our country? If I want to get a vaccine, it should be my private personal choice. Same with a mask. But wait, they say, you are endangering others by your personal choices! We have an obligation to public health! I don’t have all those moral answers.

But here is the thing that bothers me about the whole shebang. Covid-19 is caused by a virus. It’s science, basic science, and the whole thing should never have been politicized in the first place. Yes, both sides of the aisle manipulated this event for their own purposes. Everyone is guilty on that one. But for me, it is just science, and we have to deal with that now regardless of whether it is biological warfare, an accidental leak, or a natural evolution of the SARS virus. Whatever it is and wherever it came from, we have to deal with it.

What would we do differently here if this wasn’t so politically charged?

What would you do differently?

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport and at Medium; she is the author of Cane River Bohemia: Cammie Henry and her Circle at Melrose Plantation. Follow her on Instagram @patbecker25 and Twitter @paustin110.

The New Aug Indulgence Calendar is now up and ready (Portiuncula Indulgence available today)

I’m a day late on this but the new August Indulgence Calendars are now available.

One which is filled out with names of people to earn indulgences for and one which is blank for you to fill in names as you desire. Pick your favorite.

Today is a great day for this post because on Aug 2nd you can get a Plenary Indulgence (under the normal conditions) for simply attending a parish church. This is known as the annual Portiuncula Indulgence

Anyways here are the files for download

As we did before here are the indulgence norms for those who don’t know them:

ndulgence Norms and notes

  1. Communion on the day of an indulgence. This can be applied to any amount of indulgences that day.
  2. Confession within 20 days of the day of an indulgence. Applies to all indulgences during that period
  3. Prayers for the intentions of the Holy Father (an Our Father, Hail Mary or any appropriate prayer) once per day of indulgence.
  4. To earn an indulgence you must be in a state of grace (no unconfessed mortal sin) at the time of the indulgenced act.
  5. Indulgences can only be applied to the dead or to the person earning the indulgence. They can not be applied to any other living person.
  6. For a PLENARY indulgence you must have NO attachment to sin. If such an attachment exists the indulgence earned is only partial.
  7. A plenary indulgence can only be earned one a day (expect if death is imminent), there is no limits to partial indulgences daily.
  8. An indulgence attached to a feast day is still valid if the feast day is transferred lawfully.
  9. A specific day’s indulgence requiring a visit to a particular church or oratory can be made from noon the previous day to midnight on the actual day.
  10. No unbaptized person nor any Christian who is currently under the penalty of excommunication may earn an indulgence.
  11. You must ACTIVELY seek and or state your intention to obtain an indulgence for the act or prayer that carries it to be valid.

Prayers & Acts that carry an indulgence (Partial list) All indulgences partial unless BOLD

Prayers

The Actiones Nostras, Act of faith hope and Love, Any Devout Mental Prayer, Adsumus, Adoro te Devote, Prayer to St. Joseph, Prayer of Thanksgiving, The Angelus, Domine Deus Omnipotens, Spiritual Communion, The Apostles Creed, Angels Dei, The Niceane Creed, The office for the dead, Any approved Litanies, Psalm 130, Iesu Dulcissime Redemptor, Ave Maria Stella, Maria Mater Gratiae, Exaudi Nos, O Sacrum Convivium, Prayer for the Pope, Prayer for the Dead, Psalm 51, Sub tuum praesidium, Prayer for Benefactors, Angel of God Prayer, Te Deum, Public Novenas for Pentecost Christmas or the Feast or the Immaculate Conception, Tantum Ergo, Prayer for Vocations, The Sign of the Cross, Sancta Maria Succurre Miseris, The Magnificat, Vista Quaesumus Domine, Act of Contrition (expect during Sacramental Confession), Prayer to St Michael, Chaplet of St Michael, Come Holy Spirit, Prayer before a Crucifix Plenary if done after communion Friday in Lent, Five decades of the Rosary Plenary if done in a family, religious community or Pious associationThe Stations of the Cross Moving from Station to Station (unless physically unable to do so)

Actions that carry an indulgence

  • Making a Pious invocation raising your mind to god while performing the duties of life
  • Devoting yourself or your goods in compassionate service to your brothers in need
  • Voluntarily abstaining from something that is licit & pleasing in the spirit of penitence
  • Adoration of the blessed Sacrament Plenary if done for a half hour or more
  • Reading the scriptures Plenary if done for a half hour or more
  • Teaching Christian Doctrine
  • Visiting a church on All Souls day (Nov 2)
  • Going on a religious retreat for 3 or more days
  • Use a blessed religious object Plenary if blessed by a Pope & used on the Feast of Sts Peter & Paul
  • Visiting a Parish Church on the Feast day of its Saint(s) or on Aug 2nd (say Our Father & Creed)
  • Attending the 1st Mass of a newly ordained priest or his jubilee mass (25th 50th or 60th anniversary)
  • Visiting a cemetery and praying for the dead (Plenary if done from Nov 1st through Nov 8th)