Even as 2021 approaches, patience remains a virtue regarding the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The arrival of vaccines is a hopeful, even joyous, sign, yet it may take until the spring or summer for millions of people in America to be vaccinated. It may take as long for residents in other countries and continents to be vaccinated as well.

In Milton, the need for diligence in keeping COVID-19 at bay is as important as in any other location.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (cdc.gov), as its landing or website page posts, are urging wearing a mask, staying six feet apart from other people, and avoiding crowds. In the CDC drawing, six figurines comprise a crowd.

COVID-19 cases are on the rise again, as are hospitalizations and deaths. This virus is nothing to fool around with, and yet not every person accepts that, as evidenced by the rise in positive coronavirus cases after Thanksgiving. On the state’s mass.gov website as of Dec. 21, there were 314,850 confirmed COVID-19 cases.

The best gift you can give to yourself and the people you care about is to follow these CDC instructions. Do this for people you don’t know or don’t like or care about; alas, the human condition is fraught with conflict.

The fumes from frequent use of hand sanitizer gel may be getting to us all, but try to think clearly. Try to think of others’ needs to stay healthy, including classroom teachers.

Think of your family at home as a self-contained unit. Instead of traveling across town or state or region to see someone in person, take advantage of technology and do it virtually. There’s always that late 19th century invention still in use today in different forms: the telephone.

Prayer in a particular faith is an individual matter. One does not need to be physically present in a church, synagogue, or mosque to keep the deity that is worshipped in heart, mind, and soul.

Physical attendance now at houses of worship is restricted to keep people safe and to stop the spread of coronavirus. Not being there in person does not mean you are less faithful than at earlier holiday years. You can pray to a God wherever you are.

The tradition and structure of religious service is missed, indeed. When things get better with the virus, attendance at faith-based services can return to pre-pandemic times. Maybe it will be better than in pre-pandemic times as church attendance has declined over the last 20 years, according to a Gallup Poll.

Meanwhile, if you’ve ever wanted a can of Lysol disinfectant spray for Christmas as much as you wanted as a kid to see a bicycle under the tree or in a room, know that you are not alone.

Take care. Stay safe.

– Lisa D. Connell


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