Column: Defining the ‘new normal’ 


Commentary by Lorene Burkhart 

According to Google and Merriam-Webster, normal means conforming to a type, standard or regular pattern. So I’m wondering what it means when people say we have a new normal? Does it mean that our standards will change? It’s very confusing as we are climbing out of our COVID-19 pit.

My church services no longer include passing an offering plate or signing an attendance sheet. The “new normal” is to make your donation online or in a box in the lobby and to record your attendance by scanning one of those funny squares. At least the coffee and donuts in fellowship hall have resumed!

Children will probably discover new rules when they return to school and some adults are changing their workplace from the office to their home. Work attire for men seldom requires a tie. How would you like to be in the tie business?

The new normal doesn’t accommodate life without a computer. Some of our elderly residents who have resisted them have finally added an iphone to their lives. Reservations for dinner are made on a portal, either through an app on your device or using the one in the lobby. The old-fashioned phone call still works, though, for some.

In a recent sermon series entitled “Everyday Hope,” we were encouraged to follow our faith for the challenges our new normal lives are encountering. Seeking fulfillment in our “new” lives requires every ounce of strength we can muster. 




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