Sat. Sep 26th, 2020

During the time of social distancing and distance learning, our youngest son had a very different curriculum than his older brothers. His physical education was darting out of the house and seeing how far he could get across the yard before my wife or I caught up to him. His art class became film appreciation through Netflix and Disney+, which also help maintain quiet while his brothers did school work or participated in video conferencing with their classes.
One of the Disney movies in his rotation was the recent sequel, “Frozen 2,” in which sisters Elsa and Anna accompany their snowman friend, Olaf, on the next adventure. While the original “Frozen” had the show stopping song, “Let It Go,” the sequel’s big number was “Into the Unknown,” another power ballad sung by Broadway star Idina Menzel.
Count yourself blessed if you have not seen “Frozen” or “Frozen 2.” There is grace in “Frozen” ignorance.
In the song, Queen Elsa wrestles with her restlessness, a stirring within her that there is something that lies outside of the picturesque Arendelle. This stirring manifests itself in a high pitch musical note that only she seems to hear. By the end of the song, Elsa embarks into the unknown, to uncover this voice and to discover herself.
It’s that refrain that can become an earworm, tumbling about when considering the unknown. I have caught myself humming it on occasion when public health or government officials have stated that there is so much unknown when it comes to the novel coronavirus.
There is still so much unknown about the emotional, mental and physical effects that this pandemic will have on people, especially our children. My heart and prayers have turned towards those embarking on next steps in their education and lives, those transitioning from elementary to high school or from high school to college or from college to professional life. Those young people, and their parents, are truly stepping into the unknown historically, but even more so during a global crisis.
For those facing the unknown and the many constant changes, it may be beneficial to turn to Scripture for comfort and peace. One of my favorite Gospel passages when considering storms and uncertainty is Matthew 14:22-33 in which Jesus walks on water and instructs Peter to get out of the boat and walk on the water towards Him.
Jesus tells Peter and the apostles, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” (Mt. 14:27) He says the same thing to each of us facing unknown situations at school, at home, or at work. How do we take courage? We trust that Jesus is alive, extends His mercy to us, and draws us closer to Him.
If Jesus could calm that storm then, He can certainly calm the storms of our hearts. If Jesus could call Peter out of the boat then, He can certainly call his followers to step out of our comfort zones and live a radical discipleship. If Peter could walk on water then, Jesus can certainly still do miracles and qualify the call to build His Kingdom.
Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus. If we do that, we can accomplish amazing things. Once Peter sees how strong the wind became, and took his gaze away from Jesus and onto things that he could not control, he became frightened and began to sink. Peter cried out, “Lord, save me!” (Mt. 14:30) Many of us have faced those dangerous winds in our own lives and felt alone, isolated or depressed. We cry out, Lord, save us.
Hold on to what we know — Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Have faith in the Son of God, with our vision fixed on Him, and grow closer to Him. With faith, we can step into the unknown.
— Adam Ganucheau is the Director of the Office of Youth Ministry for the Archdiocese of Mobile. He may be emailed at
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By Editor

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