Will this feeling of community outlive the pandemic?

The world is looking for a glimmer of hope in this time of darkness.

Believe it or not, I think we can see it out there. Indeed, the coronavirus pandemic that has gripped the planet is producing plenty of shining lights.

One of them must be this sense of community many of us are feeling. I am at this moment watching the “One World Together” special on TV. The message has been delivered loudly and with crystal clarity: We need to keep loving each other once this crisis passes into history.

The medical experts are telling us it will pass. They guarantee it. Yes, we are grieving at the death and sickness that has felled so many of our fellow human beings. However, efforts by celebrities, medical experts and scientists remind us of what might be considered a cliché, that “We’re in this together.”

I will take that message with me long past the time we can return to some semblance of a normal life.

Yes, we are responding well as a human community. We all understand the social distancing requirements, and we’re adhering to them; we are devoting greater attention to personal hygiene; we’re learning how to spend more time at home; we’re helping our neighbors, our friends, our loved ones.

We also are responding with a sense of love that we don’t usually express out loud. Frankly, it’s a feeling I enjoy experiencing. I don’t want it to end even if we get the “all clear” that we’ve defeated the pandemic.

My sincerest of hopes right now — at this defining moment — is that the sense of community and oneness we’re feeling lives well past the crisis that has gripped us hard.

I believe it will.

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