vrijdag, april 17, 2020

Marks for isolation-tolerance

This last month life together with my younger brother and sister and parents is lived quite differently than normal, as is the case for the rest of The Netherlands. There is new ‘normal’, in which there is more flexibility, but also more insecurity.

To fathom what we feel like ever so often we ask ourselves, while seated at the table, the following question: on a scale of 1 to 10 – where 1 means you cannot cope with isolation any longer and 10 that you can keep us this way of living for months to come – how do you rate yourself now? From this you can conclude that some of us are fairly appreciative of the rest and rhythm of isolation, while others can’t wait to hug their friends.

I rated myself constantly at 5 as I really appreciate being able to shape my days in my own way, but I do sometimes long for a beer with some friends.

In recent weeks together with Karin, Sebastiaan and Myrthe I was permitted to prepare a Taizé service in the Lukas church in The Hague. For this purpose we met in the Lukas church at an appropriate distance, sometimes ludicrously so, to shape the Taizé service. During our small gatherings we laughed, ate and sang Taizé songs, bringing forth all sorts of nostalgic memories.

While exchanging the musical notes and small gestures I realised how much I had missed this. To be together with other likeminded people outside my own family proved to be such a privilege. Just for a moment I realized that perhaps I rated lower on the scale of isolation-tolerance, as I so enjoyed being together.

I hope that our Taizé service on 26 April may radiate rest and hope to those participating online. I hope that the Taizé music and silence can be calming and hope giving to those for whom isolation is just a bit too much. And I sincerely hope that people may enjoy these small moments of contact with their friends in spite of everything, just as I was able to experience during the preparations for the Taizé service.

Floris Joziasse, Den Haag

2020, April 17

* The digital service on Sunday, April 26, starting at 11.15 am, can be attended via lukaskerk-denhaag.nl