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Comfort in This Time of Crisis

Posted by John Shea on


Here is a poem by John Shea that I have found to be comforting to myself and others in this time of crisis. You have permission to send it to others if you think it might help them as well.

Stay as safe and well as possible. Help one another any way you can.

Greg Pierce

President and Publisher

ACTA Publications

Spirits Arrive

by John Shea

Like God,

Bidden or unbidden,

spirits will arrive….

We know who they are—

family, friends,

anyone who ever wandered

into the welcome of our smile.

They only hunger now

for a moment of our memory.

But be assured,

their mission is not to haunt.

They will not enter in the usual way.

Do not listen for the doorbell.

Do not wait for a card.

Do not scan your e-mails.

Do not check spam.

They appear from inside,

when our minds are too exhausted

to block entry

and we have given up

fighting back tears.

Too often we push them away,

insisting over and over again,

“They are gone. They are gone.”

We hug our loss to our heart.

Missing the point:

they are sent

as a hallelujah chorus

to sing us out of this narrow box

we mistake for the fullness of life.

Excerpted from the poem “Spirits at Christmas”

from the book Seeing Haloes by John Shea,

copyright 2017, published by Liturgical Press.

Used with permission of the author. All Rights Reserved.

Available at or 800-397-2282.