When I left church on March 1, 2020, I never in my wildest imaginings thought it would be well over a year before we would celebrate the Eucharist together again! It has been quite a ride through this pandemic, and while it’s not over yet, your Vestry and I believe the time has come to gather together for outdoor, in-person worship. In our conversations throughout this pandemic time, we have always agreed that we will be part of the solution rather than part of the problem, and that we would always take the safest way forward. Until now, that has meant virtual rather than in-person services.
At last Sunday’s Vestry meeting, we made the decision to have our first in-person service when we celebrate the Feast of St Barnabas on June 6th! We will gather in the close (the patio outside the parish hall) for this Sunday service, renew our baptismal vows and consecrate our newly constructed labyrinth! It will be a glorious day of celebration!
The staff and several hard-working volunteers have been diligently preparing for your return. There are protocols to follow (more about that later) that may try your patience, but those protocols will continue to keep us safe when we’re together! Anyone attending worship services will need to register, sign a consent form with photo release, wear a mask at all times and follow all protocols that have been put in place. We aren’t ready to take your reservations yet, as we are still working on the registration system. We promise to send more details about reservations and logistics in the coming weeks. We will begin with one service at 10:30AM, in order to allow children to attend their Zoom Kid’s Sunday gatherings at 9am, and families to have time to get to the church service. We will evaluate after a couple of weeks and hope to be offering an 8:00 Rite 1 service and a 10:00 Rite 2 service later in the summer. While we won’t have any of the beautiful images or artwork Rev. Jim has been offering us in our streamed services, we will record the services for those of you who aren’t ready to come back or cannot be with us at church. We will need lots of volunteers to help us make this happen! Please email email@example.com if you are willing to volunteer with set up, take down, registration, traffic directing, etc.
I am thrilled about finally being able to celebrate the Eucharist with you again, and to gather together with our beloved community. I welcome your responses, your feedback and your questions. I cannot wait to welcome you home to St. Barnabas!
With love and great gratitude, Karen†