Finding the upside

Our columnists reminiscence on the blessings and challenges of 2020.

By a wide margin, the most-viewed article on our website this year was Lloyd Rang’s column called “The upside of COVID-19.” Despite the title, this was not a feel-good fluff piece; it was an honest examination of the challenges we were all facing in March. And it clearly resonated with you, as it was read and shared nearly 4,500 times online!

As one reader called to say, “Christian Courier provides tremendous encouragement.”

“I almost don’t even mind all of the unpronounceable Dutch names,” another joked.

To close out the year, I asked our columnists a few pandemic-related questions, and then found my own spirits rising as I scrolled through their answers. May you be similarly blessed! Merry Christmas!

Has the pandemic made writing easier or more difficult?

Easier (60%): fewer distractions in quarantine; more time at home; plenty of issues to address with the Gospel.

Harder (40%): More challenging to be sensitive to the situation of readers.

Has being at home more had any unexpected benefits?

More requests for writing and online events – David Koyzis.
Taking in thought-provoking speakers & diverse worship services without travelling – Kathy Vandergrift.
Having my husband home for lunch is lovely – Katie Munnik.
Lunchtime food & board games with my wife – Tom Wolthuis.
Rediscovering my hobby of ham radio – Derek Schuurman.
Even more naps than normal – Curt Gesch.
Purging computer files and filing cabinets, long walks with my wife, feeding chickadees, longer emails to friends, less time and money on driving – Bob Bruinsma.
Reduced my carbon footprint without trying too much – Kathy Vandergrift.

What are you grateful for right now?

Virtually everything. It’s been a difficult year in so many ways, but some amazing things have happened as well – David Koyzis.
Being healthy and having my wife, children and grand-children all COVID-free up till now – Bob Bruinsma.
My family’s health and how technology is keeping us connected with faraway friends – Katie Munnik.
A wonderful wife to shelter at home with – Derek Schuurman.
Local young couples with children who keep us young-ish – Curt Gesch.
More aware that I am among the very privileged – Kathy Vandergrift.
My only comfort in life and death, health and family –Tom Wolthuis.
My wife, my son, and our daughter . . . arriving in March – Lloyd Rang.

  • Angela became Editor of CC in 2009, having learned English grammar in Moscow, research skills in grad school and everything else on the fly. Her vision is for CC to give body to a Reformed perspective by exploring what it means to follow Jesus today. She hopes that the shared stories of God at work in the world inspire each reader to participate in the ongoing task of renewing his creation. Angela lives in Newcastle, Ontario with her husband, Allan, and three children.

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