On Being Trapped

Source: the author.

With all this isolation, quarantine, physical distancing, we are all experiencing some confinement and insulation.  At least, that is my feeling.  Whether at home or in the parish, I sense somehow that I am trapped.

Home is not so bad since five other Jesuits are in the house.  There is camaraderie; but, as days go by, even that palls and I need to escape to the privacy of my room.

Church is worse.  Celebrating Mass before a camera and two persons in a space meant for as many as 800, missing my congregation, I sense I’m in exile, cut off from what should be.  Especially on Holy Saturday, I felt I was in the tomb.  Lots of emptiness.

I guess it was a real experience of that part of the Easter Triduum.  But the lighting of the Christ Candle at the Vigil  of Easter reminded me that confinement, darkness, and death is not the end for disciples of Jesus.

Jesus promises light and life to those faithful to Him.   I pray to be a faithful and fervent bearer of His light to others especially during this Easter and pandemic time.  That is my prayer for you too!


Frank Obrigewitsch, SJ, is pastor of St. Ignatius parish in Winnipeg.

  • Peter Monty
    Posted at 08:59h, 25 May Reply

    Thanks, Frank. I can relate to your reflection.

  • Peter Bisson SJ
    Posted at 09:25h, 25 May Reply

    Amen Frank! Thank you.

  • Caroline Maloney
    Posted at 13:05h, 25 May Reply

    Fr. Frank, you sure put your finger on this strange experience of darkness and isolation we are having. As I walked around the yard this morning in the sunshine, I could hear the wee chickadees singing, thankfully, but still can’t escape this eerie feeling of there being a lid on things! Thank you for your reflection.

  • Patrick Burns
    Posted at 13:50h, 25 May Reply

    Deer Frank,

    I photographed St. Ignatius several years ago


    Perhaps you remember me from Campion.


    • Roy Frank Obrigewitsch
      Posted at 17:27h, 26 May Reply

      Yes, I do. Happy Easter! It’s good to see your photographs.

  • Valerie Forrest
    Posted at 12:53h, 26 May Reply

    Thank you for documenting your everyday life experience
    during this Covid-19 Pandemic with an honest account of your
    feelings which many of us can relate to. I especially share your
    experience of feeling trapped.

  • Brook Stacey, SJ
    Posted at 22:43h, 27 May Reply

    Well I’m glad you’re not sick of me yet Frank, and only need to retreat from time to time ! 🙂

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