From Father Dorsch:
Dear Members of the Church of the Resurrection,
After much thought and prayer, and in consultation with the Vestry of the Church of the Resurrection, I am cancelling all public worship services for the next three weeks to help mitigate the transmission of the COVID-19 pandemic. This has been a hard decision because I know how much our corporate worship sustains us spiritually, but given the potential for spreading infection especially for our at-risk population we feel that it is the right action to take.
Even though we have taken precautions and had more stringent protocols ready to implement, it is clear that in the current situation we are unable to fully contain any possible infection at worship services. And the risk imposed even with appropriate social distancing could have serious health implications for our older members. Accordingly, out of an abundance of caution, we also are suspending all small group gatherings. These are detailed in the following announcements.
However, recognizing our need to stay in touch with other members of the community and to continue to be strengthened in our spiritual lives there are a few public and private opportunities that are available. The outdoor Labyrinth remains open as do the outdoor Stations of the Cross. The office will be open from 9:00 to 11:30 each weekday: normally Tina will be here Monday, Wednesday and Friday; Deacon Lauri will be here Tuesday and Thursday.
If you wish to do the Way of the Cross in the Church itself and you are well and symptom free, you may come to the office and walk the stations either alone or with one other person separated by the appropriate space. In addition, we will provide an email each week that will include the Collect of the Day, the Lessons, Psalm and Gospel, the Sermon and the Prayers for you to use at home, possibly at the time when we would worship together on Saturday evenings or Sunday mornings.
In the coming weeks, we hope to have a video of these portions of the Liturgy of the Word presented by lectors, Deacon Lauri and Father Dorsch. This will probably be on the Facebook platform, but possibly another platform as well. Some small groups such as the Confirmation Class and Wednesday Study Group may set up a small email group to continue their work. Other groups that want to remain in contact with each other are invited to do the same.
I would encourage you to simply stay in contact with other parishioners by phone, especially people you regularly speak with on Saturdays or Sundays. For some of our older members worship is one of the main social connections they have each week. Many people may feel quite alone, either through self-isolation or simply concern about their vulnerability to the virus. If you would like to talk with and encourage those who now are not able to be at worship, we will try a develop a list with the help of our Deacon.
Through this all remember that as people of faith, we are invited to live into the love of God by following the Way of Life that Jesus offers us. Let us express our faith by continuing to be open to growth in both the knowledge and love of the Lord, and be expressing our concern for the welfare of our friends and neighbors.
I am reminded of a quote from Robert Frost: “The best way out is always through.” There is no need for panic or hiding or hording. With appropriate cautions and concern for the well-being of the greater community, we can go forth in faith trusting in God’s providential care. May God bless us and keep us all safe and secure.