[Here is an important addendum to this message.]
In the mid-14th century, a bacteria called yersinia pestis was carried by fleas from Asia to Europe, being transported on rats that commonly infested merchant ships. As these ships arrived in ports such as Constantinople, Marseilles (mar-say), and Barcelona, the rats would disembark, carrying the infected fleas through Europe. And the Bubonic Plague, or Black Death, was born.
Estimates put the death toll from the plague between 75-200 million Europeans, which would have been half of the entire population.
In recent years, fears of a global pandemic returned with the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa.
Yet, the entire human race already has been infected by a pandemic that leads to certain death. No one is immune; everyone is infected.
We call this pandemic sin.
It is universally shared condition into which every human being is born regardless of nationality or ethnicity, religious affiliation.
You are infected. I am infected. Our children. Every family member. Every neighbor and friend.
It is the pandemic of sin that is at the root of every evil, from global conflicts to interpersonal conflict, from corporate corruption to inner city violence, and from school bullying to religious hypocrisy, greed, slander, gossip, jealousy and hatred.
It is sin that has distorted human desire.
The good news is… there is a cure.