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Friday Greetings - May 15

When our son, Nathan, was little he would frequently say “I have a plan” and then explain why we should do what he thought would be fun. I suspect he inherited that tendency from me because I would often say to him “here’s the plan” and then we would do the things I thought were important. I can’t promise this plan is perfect, nor that it will meet the desires of everyone, and there is ever chance it will change as we move into the coming weeks. That having been said, I have spoken to the leaders of our congregation, and here is how we “plan” to move forward.

May 17 & 24: We will have a blended and balanced worship service available at 11:00am on Facebook, YouTube, and 97.9FM, the Bear.

May 31: We will have an outdoor worship service, Pentecost in the Park at 9:30am in the lot beside The Galley Store. That service will be broadcast on Facebook, YouTube, and 97.9FM at 11:00. If you can join us in the park, please respect social distancing, wear a mask, and bring the electronic bulletin with you. We hope to have communion at that time, depending on the availability of prepackaged communion kits.

Beginning June 7: We will have 3 worship services at 8:30, 9:30, and 11:00. The 8:30 service will be the Gospel Service in the Chapel. The 9:30 service will be the Xperience service in the sanctuary. The 11:00 service will be the traditional service in the sanctuary. Some guidelines for everyone:

• All 3 services will be available on Facebook. Those at greater risk, over 60 or having underlying medical issues, are encourage to continue worshiping virtually.

• Those involved in Sunday School Classes are asked to worship together, virtually in order to serve those who may not have a small group connection. Sunday School classes will be able to determine their own schedule for worship and formation.

• Those who do attend worship in the Chapel and Sanctuary, please note that space will be limited. We will seek to provide social distance by blocking pews and ask that all keep 6 feet of separation.

• Everyone who comes to the church building, whether for Sunday School virtual worship or worship in the chapel and the sanctuary is asked to please wear a mask.

• As singing is among the riskier behaviors because it spreads droplets/aerosols which can carry the virus a significant distance and remain suspended in the air highly increasing the risk of infection, we ask you to refrain from group singing. There will be music, but we ask that you participate spiritually.

• Offering plates will be available in the narthex and chapel entrance. We will not pass the plate.

• We ask everyone to utilize electronic bulletins and we will use projection as we are able. Hymnals will be removed from the pews.

• Communion will be offered through the Sunday School Classes. If you are not currently engaged in a class, we will work to create new classes for people.

I know these are difficult changes to embrace. We ask for everyone’s understanding as we seek to live into the best advice we have received. Please remember, it is the most vulnerable among us that will set the pace for our return to worship. We are doing all we can to provide a meaningful experience for all while still being aware of the dangers we face. We ask for your continued support as we live into this new reality.

Pastor Tom

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