Lower Manhattan’s Local News
An Easter Message
Spiritual Guidance at a Time of Quarantine
Easter Sunday and the whole world quarantined. Sounds like a bad joke or a scene from a horror movie, but it is true. Still, we greet one another in hope, (virtually) proclaiming the Good News of God’s love when we say (from a distance), Happy Easter!
Easter culminates the period of Lent, a forty-day cycle of fasting, penance, and prayer. Ironically, the words for Lent and quarantine share the same linguistic root. The season of Lent is also called “Quaresma,” which comes from a tradition of quarantine for forty days.
On April 12, 2020, Christians throughout the world will celebrate this holiest of days. On Easter Sunday, also called Pascha or Resurrection Sunday, we mark the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, three days after his crucifixion and burial. As we celebrate Easter, we also recall our Jewish brothers and sisters who celebrate Passover and wish them “chag Pesach samech” — happy Passover festival.
On so many levels, this Easter parallels the first Easter 2000 years ago for the followers of Jesus. From the time of Jesus’ betrayal, suffering, death, and burial, his followers quarantined themselves — locked themselves away, “social distancing” from the other believers gathered in Jerusalem at that time. The one they had imagined to be Messiah and savior of the world had been arrested, punished, crucified, and was buried. They were stunned. Their hopes were dashed and they were afraid they could suffer a similar fate. So, they were hiding and quarantining themselves.
The transformative power of the Easter story is that Jesus appeared to them while they were quarantined, present to them, even in their fear. His first words to them were, “Peace be with you.” Oh, how prescient that Easter greeting from 2000 years ago is in this very moment. How we long to be reminded of the peace of Christ abiding through the generations.
For many Christians, this is their first experience of celebrating Easter at home, without the glorious setting of church, wonderful liturgies, and well-planned music and flowers. Children used to egg hunts, fun games, special foods and family gatherings are now indoors. All of us have had our life patterns change radically.
Even so, we remember that first Easter and believe that Jesus will enter into our homes and visit us with the gift of new and abundant life. “I am alive and because I live you live also,” says the Risen Christ.
The Good News of Easter and the Risen Christ offer us peace in these uncertain times. We need peace, because we are troubled. We need peace because some of our families, friends, and colleagues are sick. We need peace as we think about our friends and family who work on the front line of this crisis. We need peace because we are worried that we might get sick. We need this Easter message of peace, because we are worried about today and what the future may bring. Now, more than ever; we need to hear and celebrate this Easter message: Peace be with you.
After greeting them with a message of peace, Jesus showed them the wounds on his hands and his side. Somehow, the disciples were transformed by seeing the actual marks of Jesus’ suffering and death. By showing them his wounds, Jesus proclaims that part of the Easter message is always an acknowledgment of the brokenness, the pain, the suffering, and even the death in the world. The God we worship in Christ is a God who suffered with us, a God who experienced pain and death. By showing them his wounds, Jesus declares that pain, suffering, and death do not have the last words. Jesus declares to us in his Easter appearance that we are called to be attentive to the pain, suffering and death that others experience. Our COVID-19 ordeal brings us daily news of suffering, pain, and death; Easter reminds us that love and life are greater than pain and death.
“Do not be afraid” are the other words spoken by Jesus at his first Easter appearance. In our quarantine experience, what a blessing to receive those words.
Trinity’s Reverend Mark Bozzuti-Jones: “The season of Lent is also called “Quaresma,” which comes from a tradition of quarantine for forty days. Easter is a time that reminds us that we need not be afraid in the face of all the challenges and suffering of life. We are not called to deny the reality or the advice of the medical professionals; but called to live in such a way that we remain actively committed to compassion, love, and life.”
Easter is a time that reminds us that we need not be afraid in the face of all the challenges and suffering of life. We are not called to deny the reality or the advice of the medical professionals; but called to live in such a way that we remain actively committed to compassion, love, and life.
“Forgive.” Jesus also encouraged his disciples as he visited them for that first resurrection morning to practice forgiveness. Hopefully, as we live within the quarantine, we can be people who practice repentance and forgiveness.
How will we be agents of peace? How will we help heal the suffering in the world? How will we practice forgiveness? How will we bring new life to others? In Easter, we celebrate the new life in Jesus Christ. May we see and celebrate and be this new life in these times.
For children and the elderly, these are especially challenging times. May we find creative ways of celebrating this new life of Easter. May all people of goodwill experience the peace, joy, courage, love, and life that we celebrate at Easter time. May we commit to living lives consecreated to compassion, generosity, respect, peace, and love.
For Christians, we celebrate Easter not just on this special and first Easter, but every day; may our lives be filled with joy, peace, hope, love, and life. Happy Easter.
By the Rev. Dr. Mark Bozzuti-Jones
((Editor’s Note: Dr. Bozzuti-Jones is an Episcopal Priest at Trinity Church, he serves as Strategic Clergy for Global Initiatives and Director, Core Values. Father Mark is an award-winning author and leads Trinity’s partnership in Latin America and the Caribbean. He is fluent in Portuguese.)
Updated Pandemic Statistics
City Releases Data about Local Rates of Infection
Lower Manhattan’s eight zip codes are the site of 402 confirmed cases of coronavirus, up from 309 cases on April 2, which represents an increase of approximately 30 percent.
A total of 402 residents of Lower Manhattan (among 973 who have been tested) are confirmed to have been infected by the pandemic coronavirus, according to statistics released by the City’s Department of Health (DOH). The current local mortality rate for COVID-19 is approximately 5.8 percent. To read more…
NEWS FROM PREVIOUS EDITIONS
OF THE BROADSHEETDAILY
Why Is This Night Different from All Others?
A Lower Manhattan Religious Leader Reflects on Passover in the Time of COVID-19
Rabbi Darren Levine leads the congregation Tamid: The Downtown Synagogue at a gathering at St. Paul’s chapel (Photo credit: Marielle Solan)
Everyone agrees. Tonight will be different from any other night. Passover seders here in Lower Manhattan and around the world are going to be different. Yet, there are many ways to keep the Passover experience just as real and meaningful as any other year.
In fact, the parallels between Passover and the experience of COVID-19 are many. Passover is about the trials and challenges of the ancient Israelites. It tells the story of a community of people on their journey from oppression to freedom. The stories told and questions asked lend themselves naturally to a conversation about our experience of living and coping in the time of COVID-19.
Federal Legislator Backs Proposal to Extend September 11 Safeguards to Coronavirus
A screen shot from Monday evening’s online meeting of the Downtown Independent Democrats political club (to which all participants linked remotely, via the Internet, from their homes), during which Lower Manhattan community leader Justine Cuccia (upper right) proposed to United States Congressman (center) that federal programs aiding September 11 first responders and survivors be expanded to cover the pandemic coronavirus
United States Congressman Jerry Nadler has endorsed a proposal by a Lower Manhattan community leader to expand the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) September 11th Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) to cover illness and death from the pandemic coronavirus among the populations of first responders and survivors whose health was impacted by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
An an online meeting of the Downtown Independent Democrats political club on Monday evening, Mr. Nadler was asked by Justine Cuccia, a co-founder of the grassroots organization, Democracy for Battery Park City, whether he would, “support an expansion of the Health Program and the VCF to cover COVID-19, because the survivor population are among those who are at heightened risk of complications from this disease?” To read more…
Resilience, in the Original Sense of the Word
Facing Adversity, One Community Leader Tries to Lead By Example
In the days following September 11, 2001, Bob Townley called the community together at the basketball court at the intersection of Canal Street and Avenue of the Americas.
Bob Townley, the founder and executive director of Manhattan Youth, reflects, “I’ve been through this before — twice, actually.” He is referring to a pair of previous cataclysms that seemed to threaten the viability of the Lower Manhattan community he serves, as well as the organization he leads.
The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and the inundation of Hurricane Sandy, 11 years later, both wrecked the neighborhood. And both raised questions about whether Manhattan Youth, which provides services to thousands of school children, families, and seniors, could remain viable. So the ongoing crisis related to the pandemic coronavirus is not without precedent for him.
“In the fall of 2001,” he recalls, “pieces of the World Trade Center were in a pool on Rector Place, where we had been giving toddlers swimming lessons a few days before. And when I finally got back into our Downtown Community Center in November, 2012, we had 20 feet of water in the basement. The entire bottom level, and a second story below the street, were both submerged.”
New Amsterdam Market returns in virtual format, as a service to the growing community of purveyors, distributors, producers and other small businesses who are creating regional, sustainable, regenerative, healthful, and equitable food systems.
This initial listing is focused primarily on New York City and is by no means comprehensive. We welcome all suggestions for expanding our Directory to include like-minded businesses in the Northeast States including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware; Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.
Robert LaValva, Founder
New Amsterdam Market
A pair of peregrin falcons are back in Lower Manhattan, high above 55 Water Street. Click to watch
a live camera as they care for their clutch of eggs that are expected to hatch in the coming weeks.
Virtual Events Available to All
Developing Stories: Native Photographers in the Field
National Museum of the American Indian
Developing Stories: Native Photographers in the Field is a pair of sequential photo essays created by Native photojournalists Russel Albert Daniels and Tailyr Irvine in collaboration with the National Museum of the American Indian. The work of both photographers springs from the same desires—to break down stereotypes of Native peoples and to portray stories that show the diversity and complexity of their contemporary lives.
While the installation of the first photo essay by Daniels — The Genízaro People of Abiquiú — is postponed due to coronavirus, the photo essay is online.
Youth Art Contest
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Celebrate Endangered Species Day (May 15) and the 50th anniversary of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) by participating in the Greater Atlantic Region’s Marine Endangered Species Art Contest.
Endangered and threatened species need our help. Students’ artwork will showcase their knowledge and commitment to protecting these animals. Throughout 2020, NOAA is celebrating 50 years of science, service, and stewardship. NOAA is a world-class forecasting and resource management agency with a reach that goes from the surface of the sun to the depths of the ocean floor. In the next 50 years, NOAA will advance innovative research and technology, answer tough scientific questions, explored the unexplored, inspire new approaches to conservation, and power the U.S. economy. Through April 24
Today through April 30
Mission to Remember
9/11 Memorial and Museum
This documentary series explores the shared commitment to the mission behind the 9/11 Memorial & Museum. From showing how we create new traditions of tribute, to demonstrating our unique conservation techniques, the short films go beyond the surface to immerse viewers in untold stories of honor and remembrance. Click here to view the series.
Today through April 30
The Stories They Tell
9/11 Memorial and Museum
Family members, survivors, first responders and recovery workers discuss the 9/11 history they are helping to preserve through the material they have shared with the 9/11 Memorial Museum. Click here.
Today through April 30
Battery Dance TV
morning warmup/stretching/conditioning exercises, mid-day classes in contemporary dance with afro, ballet and jazz fusion elements, evening classes in varied ballroom styles, plus a daily short video at 4pm by dancers performing in their living rooms.
Today through April 30
Tourist in Your Own Town Videos
The New York Landmarks Conservancy
Now that most of us are staying home, you can take virtual tours of New York City.
Visit Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, Alexander Hamilton’s home in Upper Manhattan, the Woolworth Building in Lower Manhattan, the site of the Battle of Brooklyn, the home of one of America’s first female photographers on Staten Island, and Louis Armstrong’s home in Queens. There are 61 sites in all. You’ll be amazed at the discoveries you will make.
Downtown Food Festival Supports Local Restaurants by Feeding Healthcare Workers
The ever-popular Taste of Tribeca food festival has been cancelled for this year, but the organizers are rallying support to help the now-struggling restaurants that have contributed food for decades, by purchasing meals to donate to hospital workers.
Starting today, up to 100 free meals will be arriving daily at local healthcare facilities, prepared by half a dozen Lower Manhattan restaurants, and paid for with contributions solicited by the Downtown parents who organize the Taste of Tribeca food festival.
For the past 25 years, that event has accepted food contributed by dozens of eateries, and sold these “tastes” at a street fair, to raise money for two beloved local public schools: P.S. 234 and P.S. 150. Earlier this month, however, mounting concerns about the pandemic coronavirus forced the first-ever cancellation of the event.
City Takes Over FiDi Hotel to House Homeless
A guard posted to the lobby of the Radisson New York Wall Street Hotel demands that a reporter leave on Monday afternoon, after refusing to answer questions about homeless people being sheltered there.
The administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio is housing several dozen homeless people in a luxury hotel in the Financial District. In a story first reported by the New York Post, the Radisson New York Wall Street Hotel (located at the corner of William and Pine Streets), which has been closed in the wake of the pandemic coronavirus, is being used (at least temporarily) as shelter for homeless adults.
The Broadsheet could not ascertain whether this is an interim measure, or if the City’s Department of Homeless Services (DHS) intends to house its clients at this site indefinitely. Also unclear is whether the hotel is being used as a quarantine facility, in the wake of reports that more than 100 residents in the City’s homeless shelter system have tested positive for the coronavirus, and two have died.
When a reporter approached the front door of the hotel on Monday afternoon to inquire, security guards in surgical masks and plastic ponchos refused to answer questions, demanded that he stop taking photographs, and ordered him to leave. The DHS did not return calls asking for comment.
Biking through traffic seven years ago at lunch hour in downtown Manhattan compared to the dearth of people and traffic after the Corona virus epidemic is a huge contrast. Footage is sped up, so although it may look a but scary, the ride was totally safe!
Thanks and be well! -Esther R.
Bravo to the Frontline Workers!
Scanning Rector Place from his window the other night, Lower Manhattan resident Marcello de Peralta captured heartfelt community appreciation for workers at the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic.
Seaport Dog Walkers Maintain Social Distancing; Their Dogs, Well, That’s Another Matter
FiDi resident Mike Devereaux sent photos of Pier 16 morning dog walks
Where to Get Care
Lower Manhattan Health Resources for Residents with Concerns
Government officials are asking that people with non-urgent health problems avoid showing up at hospital emergency rooms, which are already overburdened.
Instead, they ask that patients who have concerns consult with their personal physicians. Those in need of non-emergency medical help can also call (or walk into) one of the five Lower Manhattan urgent care clinics that remain open. As of Thursday afternoon, these are:
• CityMD Financial District (24 Broad Street). No appointment necessary. 646-647-1259.
• CityMD Fulton (138 Fulton Street). No appointment necessary. 212-271-4896.
• CityMD Tribeca (87 Chambers Street). No appointment necessary. 347-745-8321.
• NYU Langone at Trinity (111 Broadway). Appointment required. 212-263-9700.
• Mount Sinai Doctors (225 Greenwich Street, fifth floor). No appointment necessary. 212-298-2720.
That noted, anyone experiencing dangerous symptoms (such as trouble breathing or dangerous spikes in body temperature) is encouraged to go to a hospital emergency room.
Two Lower Manhattan healthcare providers are also offering Virtual Visits, in which patients can consult over the phone or video link with a physician or nurse practitioner.
To schedule such a session with NYU Langone, please browse: NYULangone.org
, and click on Virtual Urgent Care.
To make an appointment with New York-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital, please browse NYP.org
, and click on Virtual Urgent Care.
Patients enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Program are advised not to cancel or reschedule existing appointments. Clinic staff will be contacting you to make arrangements to convert these sessions into a tele-visits.
All program participants with prescriptions for their certified WTC-related conditions are strongly encouraged to sign up for Optum Home Delivery which allows for 90-day prescription fills and delivers directly to members by mail.
For more information, please call Optum at 855-640–0005, Option 2. For members who prefer to pick up prescriptions at retail pharmacies, the program is waiving early medication refill limits on 30-day prescription maintenance medications. Please call Optum at 855-640–0005, Option 3 for more information.
The World Trade Center Health Program is also covering limited COVID-19 testing for members with certain certified World Trade Center-related conditions that may put them at higher risk of illness from COVID-19. In addition to testing, treatment for COVID-19 is also covered, contingent on certain criteria being met, including that the member was eligible for COVID-19 testing, the treatment is authorized by the program, and the treatment is not experimental. Coverage of COVID-19 treatment costs requires approval by the program’s administrator, on a case-by-case basis.
The Niou Deal
Assembly Member Proposes Finance Reform as Funding Mechanism for Affordable Housing
State Assembly member Yuh-Line Niou: “When you go shopping in New York City, how much extra do you pay for sales tax? This transfer tax of one-half of one percent is less than one-sixteenth of what you pay. But it would raise billions for public housing.”
Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Monday that planning must begin immediately for how to rebuild the wreckage of the economy, once the health crisis brought on by the pandemic cononavirus has abated.
“We have to start to plan the pivot back to economic functionality,” he said during a press conference at the Jacob Javits Convention Center on Manhattan’s west side, where he announced the start of construction on a temporary hospital. “You can’t stop the economy forever.” To read more…
Your Coronavirus story in one hundred words.
Meditations in an Emergency
Our Hometown and the Myth of Eternal Return
You tell yourself that you’ve seen this story before, and more than once: edifices falling; waters rising. And you reflect that the worst situations are not those that can’t get any worse. The worst situations are the ones that are going to get worse before they get better. So you hunker down.
You recall the Old Man deciding, a lifetime ago, that since you were too old for fairy tales, you were perhaps old enough for true confessions. To read more…
Today In History April 10
Walker Evans was an American photographer best known for his work for the Farm Security Administration documenting the effects of the Great Depression. Much of Evans’s work from the FSA period uses the large-format, 8×10-inch camera.
1710 – The first law regulating copyright is issued in Great Britain
1790 – Robert Gray is first American to circumnavigate the Earth
1841 – New York Tribune begins publishing under editor Horace Greeley
1849 – Safety pin patented by Walter Hunt (NYC); sold rights for $400
1864 – Austrian Archduke Maximilian becomes emperor of Mexico
1877 – The first human cannonball, a 14 year-old girl called “Zazel” was launched in 1877 at the Royal Aquarium in London. Her real name was Rossa Matilda Richter and she later toured with the P.T. Barnum Circus.
1912 – RMS Titanic sets sail for its first and last voyage
1961 – Adolf Eichmann tried as a war criminal in Israel
1963 – USS Thresher, a nuclear powered submarine, sinks 220 miles east of Boston
1970 – Paul McCartney officially announces the split of The Beatles
1991 – Last automat (coin operated cafeteria) closes (3rd & 42nd St, NYC)
1995 – NYC bans smoking in all restaurants that seat 35 or more
1847 – Joseph Pulitzer, Hungary, publisher (St Louis Post-Dispatch, NY World)
1924 – Kenneth Noland, American painter
1934 – David Halberstam, correspondent (NY Times/Pulitzer 1964)
1931 – Khalil Gibran, Lebanese poet and painter (b. 1883)
1966 – Evelyn Waugh, British writer, dies at 62
1975 – Walker Evans, US photographer, dies at 71
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