Some of you may have already read the letter that came out earlier this week in which our Bishop, as well as the Bishops of Washington and Maryland, has begun to lay out what phased plans may look as we begin to think about a return to in-person worship. Diocesan leadership, clergy and lay, are working hard to determine when and how we can safely move forward. If you have not read this letter, you can read it here. I assure you that our Wardens and Vestries, and I, will also be working on our respective plans, which will need to be approved by the Bishop.
I am in full agreement that we must plan wisely as we go forward. I love and care for all of you deeply, and I am not willing to put any one of you (or myself) at risk. There is so much that is unknown, and what is known is, quite simply, unsettling. As you may know, the rate of infection in Shenandoah County is one of the highest in Virginia. COVID-19 is deadly. I personally know people who have died, and some of you do as well.
Our buildings may be closed, but our churches are not. The church is the people, and we are experiencing that in new and exciting ways. We are tending and caring for one another and uplifting each other.
The weekly bulletin is available on our website so you can download it Sunday to follow throughout the service. I would love for everyone to download and use it as it does take a good amount of time to put together and post. It is absolutely safe to download as it is coming directly from us.
Every Thursday, 2 to 3 p.m., the kids of the parish are meeting up via Zoom to hang out together.
SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER SERVICE
10:15 a.m. on Zoom and Facebook Live followed by a Coffee Hour on Zoom. (The bulletin is coming soon on our website. A Zoom usher is allowing people into the service from 9:45 to 10:15 a.m. when the service begins. If you try to join after that, you won’t be able to enter and will need to watch on Facebook Live.
Zoom Tip to make sure you are muted during the service: There should be a RED line through the microphone icon on the Zoom screen. If there isn’t, you are not muted so if you make any sound, Zoom will switch the video and audio of the service to you.
Mondays, 9 a.m. Morning prayer on Facebook Live
Tuesdays, 5:30 p.m. Evening prayer on Facebook Live
Wednesdays, 12 p.m. Noonday prayer on Facebook Live
Fridays, 7:30 p.m. Bedtime story with Mother Kathy, invite your friends! Facebook Live
All of the weekly and Sunday services are available to view on Facebook and our website after airing.
DROP-IN OFFICE HOURS
I am holding virtual drop-in office hours every Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Zoom. Please log on to chat — sitting in front of the computer camera staring at myself on Zoom for two hours alone gets boring quickly! (If for some reason you aren’t able to get into the Zoom meeting, please send me an email. Sometimes, technology refuses to cooperate.) Sometimes urgent matters do come up, so please forgive me if I need to duck out. There’s no need to worry about privacy — Zoom has a waiting room so I allow folks to enter one at a time so that we can meet with me privately. Or, if folks would like to meet as a group, we can do that as well during this time.
How fortunate we are to have Wilson Troxell as our organist. Wilson has offered to share his knowledge of the music from our liturgy and church history in a series of website posts we’re calling Musician’s Corner. We hope it will inform and enrich your worship experience.
PLEDGES — THANK YOU!
A huge thank you to everyone who continues to send in pledges. It is appreciated. Your generous financial gifts to Emmanuel and St. Andrew’s are what allow us to continue operation and ministries. Please continue to offer your faithful gifts by mailing your check to our church office, or by using a special online portal established through our diocesan office (available here) for electronic giving (be sure to mentions which church and the location in the memo).
Emmanuel Episcopal 122 E. Court Woodstock VA 22664
St. Andrew’s Episcopal P.O. Box 117 Mt. Jackson, VA 22842
I observe the Sabbath Friday and Saturday while Melissa is off Thursday after 1:30 p.m., Friday, Saturday and Sunday. While we may not reply immediately, we absolutely will get back to you.
NEW 2020 DIRECTORY
The new 2020 directory is available on our website. Printed copies will be available later, once the offices are reopened. To download the PDF, a password is needed which you may get from Melissa.
I’m always here for you, and if there should be any sort of pastoral crisis, please do not hesitate to be in touch. May God continue to hold us and comfort us and give us courage. May Jesus continue to open the Way of Love to us in these perilous times.