No trouble shall touch them

A writer responds to worldwide concerns about SARS.

In my home city of Toronto there's been a great deal of concern about the outbreak of SARS [sudden acute respiratory syndrome]. As I write, two hospitals have been quarantined, and a children's hospital is no longer accepting visitors. The quarantine on the building where my in-laws live was lifted only yesterday. When I spoke with my mother-in-law, I was struck by how calm she was.

A recent news report on the spread of the disease suggested that while great headway had been made in dealing with it, fear of it is still spreading rapidly. It made me think of something the Sentinel' s founder, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote over a century ago: "The press unwittingly sends forth many sorrows and diseases among the human family. It does this by giving names to diseases and by printing long descriptions which mirror images of disease distinctly in thought." She concluded: "We should master fear, instead of cultivating it" (Science and Health, pp. 196-197).

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Prayers for peace
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