For all god's people, no asterisks
Our health and wellness task force met this past Wednesday. After conversation with one another and based on our Bishop David Bard’s recommendation, West Side is pausing in-person worship through at least 1/3/21.
This is not the news any of us wanted. But it is the reality in which we live. And this is the best way we are able to care for one another during the course of this pandemic.
We continue to improve our online worship experience which goes live on Facebook and YouTube every Sunday at 10:30am. As we do so, we know that we have not perfected it. So please send any ideas and suggestions my way (Tim@gowestsidechurch.org).
This Advent we are wrapping up our stewardship theme of “You Are The Light of The World” with Stewardship consecration on Sun. 11/29. (If you haven’t been able to fill out an estimate of giving card yet for 2021, please do so as soon as possible and/or contact Bethany in the church office for another card.)
On December 6, we will begin our Advent and Christmas sermon series on “Be The Gift”. During this time we will focus on how we can embody increasingly more important characteristics of hope, joy, faith, and love.
Rest assured that all of us our grieving our lack of in-person relationship-building and worshipful gatherings. Please know that your staff team continues to dream about what we are able to do together while apart and we look forward to the implementation of vaccines and our ability to once again be together face-to-face in person some time in 2021. Our wonderful church volunteers (aka you!) continue to give of their resources, skills, and time generously and safely.
I am looking forward to Christmas (and the preparations thereof): not just the outward stuff of tinsel and trees and gifts and lights and snow(?) and food(!) and virtual pageants(!!!) . . . but of the inward journey, too, which is surprised by a baby being born in a feeding trough in a stable because there was no room in the inn. Surprise, indeed! Ever more so because this child is the Christ, our liberator, our savior, our hope, our light . . .
This year, we are being asked to prepare differently. My prayers are with you as we embark on this important work. And may we make room to be surprised: by new life, by hope, by joy . . . even in times such as this.
May we continue to sing songs of hope and joy. May we continue to love our neighbors. And may we continue to be well.