WHAT IF THERE WERE NO INTERNET, COMPUTER, AND SMARTPHONES WITH THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC?
Let us plunge our brains more into Faith and the Internet; their correlation and the answers they can provide within this virus pandemic.
As a lover of truth and not just for the pure love of it, the internet has shortened the distance of the human relationship. By that I mean it has brought individuals together through the voice, videos, world wide web and many other ways. At the same time, it has stolen the human intimacy and touch of relationships and also has made some the “digital immigrants” while leaving others as “digital Natives”.
As we sail through the chaotic period of COVID19 disease, the same internet has promised to be the potential tool to restore and connect us more with God and one another, and a response to the already affected human connections and closeness. Smartphones and the internet are essential in providing real-time tracking of the disease. The internet and computer are offering digital transformation not only of the human-divine relationships and connection but also the economic model alternatives, educational, health, and the information flow.
I am of the view that these are all the good achievements of the internet, the computer, and the android systems. Going back to the question “What if”, the keyword is “IF” and from a theological perspective, the “IF” has no place at all.The reason being that God acts always for our good and he is all-knowing. But from a scientific scope, it is a valuable and broad word that indicates openness of possibilities of different ideas, occurrences, change, and alternatives. Thus, bringing us to our conviction that God as an idea and Being, is never an alternative, occurrence, and he will never change. In fact, he has continually revealed himself through different ways like the “Internet of Things”, chaos, calamities, and pacific moments in our lives. Check this Google link and see how it has inconclusive information about the coronavirus; https://www.iflscience.com.
On the contrary, our faith in God is firm even in the midst of a crisis like a coronavirus. And “Internet of Things” comes as a true revelation of our God who enables us to M-Pesa bills, continue with education, economy, liturgical celebrations with the virtual presence of the faith community, and so on.
Consequently, if there was no internet, then we would be leaning to science alone. But we will miss the God of the “Internet of Things” and therefore, fail to find him there. Relationships will go back to close and contact connections then missing the real-time revelation of God. The economy, education, health, and information flow systems will go back to the old models, and therefore slowing down our response to coronavirus.
Better to realize right now with the threat of virus infection, if the idea God was absent, the crisis will likely be more, and the absolute moral norms will lack. Importantly, faith in God at this time of coronavirus is an essential and imminent social capital. St. JohnPaul II once remarked, “Faith grows when shared”. The “Internet of Things” enables us to continue sharing our faith. In that way, our faith in God will continue to grow that our communities of faith likewise will grow despite the physical distance. For the survival of faith communities at this time of crisis by COVID19, and the relationships devoid of fear, faith in God is essential.
Faith and prayer can now connect the faith community and the “Internet” can aid that connection. We thank God for his gift of the internet that has enabled us to create an “Agora” and real-time “Internet of Things”. Be brave, prayerful, and faithful.
About the author:
Lawrence M. Muuna has a master’s degree in Pastoral Theology and social justice from Loyola University in New Orleans, USA and he is a Doctoral Degree Student in Pastoral Theology with a focus on Pastoral Leadership and administration. Muuna is also an ordained minister in the Catholic Diocese of Meru,