Greetings, dear friends in Christ,
This email is the fourth I’ve written to respond to further directives from governments and the bishop on Covid-19.
By now, you’ve no doubt heard that Montgomery County continues as the epicenter of the virus in the Commonwealth with 30 confirmed cases. Moreover, Commonwealth and Federal officials have now restricted groups of more than ten people from meeting to promote “social distancing” to mitigate the spread of the virus by limiting physical contact. These are commonsense measures that should be respected and followed. I do not believe these actions are overreactions. The virus is novel; no one knows the ending or what to expect. Safety and preparedness are smart and moral choices.
To that end, and at the bishop’s directive, LUMC will remain closed for the next 15 days, which takes us through March 31, 2020.
While it’s a necessary and prudent step, it’s also a body blow to the Body of Christ that gathers at 300 N. Broad Street in Lansdale. There are a few ways that may soften the blow: The Tech Team is meeting tonight to set up live streaming a worship service this Sunday from the Sanctuary. More details will follow. Please pray for their efforts. If we do perfect live streaming, I’m already dreaming about meeting with groups of nine people for a Pastor’s Bible Study at the church that would be video recorded and made available for you to watch. It’s just a dream now, but cross your fingers, I will continue writing devotionals to connect with you.
Let’s adjust our perspective for a minute. Yes, this is a significant disruption in our congregation’s life. We’re still in the early stages. Difficult times are ahead. This current reality could last for months. Think of the disruption among health-care workers, employed people, those who’ve been searching for jobs, on small businesses, eateries, retailers, families with pre-school and school-aged children, families with frail loved ones, the chronically ill, the mentally ill, and those in the throes of treatment of severe illnesses Let your hopes be with them all. Call people and share your concerns.
Kathy and I miss you. To do something to connect, we sent in our offering yesterday by text. It was easy! If you’re looking for something helpful to do, keep us afloat with your regular pledges and contributions.
Set up e-giving (https://www.lansdaleumc.org/tithe/.) Text a donation by texting the words LansdaleFirstUMC to 73256. Easy peasy! Mail your check. Make an online donation to Manna on Main Street at (https://mannaonmain.org/give-money/donate-now/) since we won’t be gathering for the Lenten Series until perhaps April 1, if then!
Please watch for another follow-up email from me with plans for Sunday worship and my hopes for Holy Week and Easter.
Keep your spirits and minds at ease with Jesus’ words: And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.–Matthew 28:20 (NRSV)
My hopes and prayers continue,