Stay Home, Stay Safe, and more in the E-Newsletter for March 29, 2020 – Available in full online here.
Haga clic aquí para ver el mensaje de esta semana en español de nuestro misionero latino, Luis Valencia.
From the Rector
The Rev. Dr. Jared C. Cramer, SCP
We are living through a moment about which we will tell stories to generations yet to come.
As we enter our second week of social distancing, everything has been changed even further by our governor's decision this past Monday to issue an Executive Order requiring everyone to stay home unless doing essential work.
At St. John's, this does not significantly increase the restrictions and practices we already have in place. I'm grateful our bishop made the wise decision early on to suspend gatherings, helping get us ahead of this. Our Loving Spoonfuls ministries continues on a take-out basis—and an increasing number of people are now coming to get a hot meal. Our Food Pantry also continues with its new hours of 4pm-6pm, with items set up outside the church for people to come and take what they need. I have directed our parish staff to work from home, if at all possible, with our Sexton coming in regularly to ensure the building is in safe condition and the Bookkeeper coming in once a week to ensure donations are processed and bills are paid. With the Vestry's support, I've directed the Parish Administrator to ensure they are still paid for a full ten hours of work, even if they do not work at that level in our current state. I want to ensure our hourly staff remain taken care of during this time of crisis and difficulty.
Your continued generosity with online giving and mailing in checks will enable us to keep providing for the needs of the hungry, ensure our building remains safe and secure, that our ministry continues in this new virtual medium, and that our valued staff aren't put under more stress. Thank you for that generosity. If your own income has been adversely impacted, please know that we understand any need you have to change or suspend your pledge. If you are blessed with an income that is stable during this time, please consider increasing your giving to help cover for those who will be unable to give during this time—and to help cover for the lost plate offerings from the cessation of worship services. My own family is blessed to have a stable income (so far!), and have increased our own giving in response to this crisis.
I hope you are heeding the wisdom of that Executive Order, doing your part to ensure that we slow the pace of infection and the danger of overloading our already stressed healthcare system. As many have said, generations before have gone through greater struggle than a requirement to stay home for several weeks. Young women and men have died on the battlefield to combat fascist extremism. Around the world, people have to flee their homes because of violence, crime, and war. Millions of kids go hungry each day.
Stay home. Be with your family. Watch some of the amazing television and movies out there. Go for a walk or a hike (but make sure you keep yourself at least six feet away from anyone else you come across!). And pray. Use this as a time to recommit to the discipline of daily prayer, whether through the Forward Movement app for Daily Prayer of St. Bede's Breviary online.
Together, we will get through this. And if every one of us does our part, lives will be saved. Take advantage of the many opportunities below for online worship and connection with your church family. And when this is all over, we are going to have a Festal Holy Eucharist and a party that we will never forget!
Read more in the E-Newsletter for Sunday, March 29, 2020 online here.
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