Special Announcement #2 Regarding COVID-19 for 3/16/2020
Greetings once again my friends. I pray all of you are well and are weathering this storm with patience and a calm spirit. I have to constantly remind myself that the sky is not falling…our lives are being changed for the next couple of months, but together – and especially with God’s help – we will survive this storm.
I am so grateful to those of you who responded to my first email this morning with your answers to the four questions I posed in that email. If you haven’t answered those questions yet, it’s not too late! Just send a reply to that email to me with your responses. They will be very helpful as we move forward over the next several weeks.
I also want to remind you: if you don’t normally check your email on a regular basis, please do me a favor and check it at least twice a day – in the morning and in the afternoon – for communications from me because things are changing several times a day and this is the best way for us to communicate any changes with all of you.
Here are a few more pieces of information for you, based on my communications with our Conference Office, our staff, and some of you:
1. For Sunday, we are working on providing you with a meaningful online worship experience. What will be included is still to be determined. We are likely to use Facebook Live once again, although as more information about different platforms becomes available, that too could change. So stay tuned between now and Sunday about that. One thing is sure: the worship service will be presented online. It will also be recorded so you can view it after Sunday morning if needed. We will provide detailed instructions on how to log in as we get a little closer to Sunday. For most of our congregation members, this won’t be a problem, but I know we have some who do not have internet access or are not as computer savvy as the rest of us…so in order to keep them “in the loop,” we will either send them a letter by “snail mail” or we will reach out to them by phone. However, in order for them to participate in worship, we need to think outside the box. Which leads me to…
2. In my earlier email this morning, I asked “Would you be interested in gathering with a small group of church members?” and “Would you be willing to host a small gathering on Sunday mornings at your home?” Based on the responses I received, I think many of you thought I was asking if you wanted to be in a small group study…or if you would be willing to host a small group study. That wasn’t what I meant to ask. My thought was, if we could identify a few families who would be willing to host a very small gathering of people from the church – 4 to 6 people at the most – they could meet on Sunday mornings in those homes for the purpose of viewing the online worship service and have a short time of fellowship as well. Think of it as a watch party, like we often do on Superbowl Sunday, only without the beer and fatty foods! So, with that additional information, if you would be willing to be a Sunday morning host, please let me know. I understand there are a lot of reasons not to be a host, but I also know that, especially for those in our church who otherwise wouldn’t be able to participate in worship online, it would mean a lot to them to have a place where they could worship on Sundays.
The last thing I want to share with you this evening is that tomorrow afternoon at 3 pm our Lenten Study group will meet to discuss yesterday message using an application called ZOOM…which is kind of like Skype, but better. If you are interested in joining this study group, please send me an email ASAP so I can send you the information on how to log in. If this goes well, and I expect it will, I’m thinking about offering other weekly ZOOM groups so we can remain connected during this time.
As I requested earlier today, If you know someone in the congregation who does not have email or is not on Facebook, please reach out to them and let them know about our communication efforts and offer to contact them when you receive one of our emails so they can remain connected as well. If you do this, please let me know so I can notate that in our database and can be assured that individual is receiving care from you.
Would you also keep Bob Hodsden and Naida Pino, both of whom are still in the hospital in your prayers this week. They are both dealing with serious health conditions and really need your prayers at this time.
May God be with us all during this challenging time. As always, if you need anything, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Grace and Peace,
P.S. Sorry…one more thing…please note the following changes to our weekly calendar:
- Our Scouts are suspending their weekly meetings until the schools reopen.
- Tomorrow’s Lenten Study Group will meet at 3 pm instead of 1 pm via ZOOM. Contact Pastor Jody to receive the ZOOM invitation
- Tomorrow’s Contemplative Prayer WILL NOT meet
- Wednesday’s SoL Ringers MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
- Wednesday’s SoL Singers and Leap of Faith Praise Band Rehearsals have been CANCELLED
- Thursday’s Prayer Shawl Ministry MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
- Thursday’s Coping with Loss Group WILL MEET in the youth room at 7 pm
- Friday’s MOPs group MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
- Saturday’s Men’s Breakfast MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
- Sunday’s Koinonia Study Group MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
- Sunday’s Bible Buddies Study Group WILL NOT MEET for at least the next 8 weeks
- Sunday’s Confirmation Class MAY OR MAY NOT MEET
All of those listed as MAY OR MAY NOT MEET…as soon as those meetings are clarified, I will share that information with all of you.
I promise…future emails will NOT be this long!!
God bless, J