This Sunday will be our seventh Sunday to meet for worship via live stream rather than in person. We began on Sunday, March 15. Three days prior to that a nurse friend told me, “Churches probably need to take a few weeks off and then come back boldly with a huge grand Easter service.” That sounded perfectly awful to me. How could we miss four weeks of worship! Well, change cascaded rapidly and who knows what will happen next? Preaches often joke that there are three high holy days: Christmas, Easter and Mothers day! And now we will also celebrate Mother’s day from a distance! So when will we be together in person again and what will that look like?
Your church staff is exploring all the options and staying tuned to the city’s recommendations. And there are lots of options. We have the outdoor service during the summer and we could further space out the chairs so that we sing harmony but keep a safe distance. We could modify the number of services offered and adjust the spaces to provide comfort and peace for all who are eager to pray in the light of our majestic stained glass. Our practices of communion and hand shaking can be re-imagined. And we will use what we have learned about technology to continue improving our live stream for the future. All is up for discussion right now. I wish I had complete answers for you.
I do love what Professor Willie Jennings wrote in an article on the Pandemic: “We learn from the life of Jesus that God’s first response to suffering is to come be with us, and join us.” So what I do know is this. God is with us. And God will weave us back together. I look forward to the day when I will see you face to face.
Grace and peace,