Our little group of worshipers was about half its usual size yesterday morning.

Our local hospital’s COVID wing is full and the county is back “in the red,” and we are an older bunch of folks (Presby-terians, no coincidence), and blessed with lots of underlying conditions, so people exercising additional caution is part of that. One kind of concern.

But then, we are also a traveling bunch, which is another part of that. So we mark the specific absence of those people who are far from home, returning back east or departing down south, through whatever weather. That’s a different kind of concern.

Plus there are other things going on, things that affect health, or that take their toll on energy and mobility, and that’s another part of that. We check in, we share news, we make mental notes to call or check on This Friend or That Friend just to see how they’re doing. Still another kind of concern.

Farther afield, even our little group touches on people touched yet again by storms of various kinds – earth, air, fire, water.

Sometimes we think of “concern” as something that worries us or makes us anxious. But the root meaning is more like “matters,” “relates to,” “is relevant.” Something is going on with Them. So, something is going on with Us.

red line embellished

Image: “Eastern White Pines along Lower Ferry Road (Mercer County Route 643) in Ewing, New Jersey”, by Famartin, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons