photo by Charles Edward Case

It has been wonderful to be in contact with so many parishioners over the last two weeks; people who care deeply for one another and who have committed to strengthening connections even as we must attempt to do so remotely. It is no surprise that our community is reaching out to one another with love and care. I dare say we will never again take for granted our ability to be with one another in person!

In some of my conversations, people have asked whether services could be livestreamed from inside the church. I know some other congregations are doing this, and I understand the desire to feel that somewhere, in some way, life is proceeding as normal. For now, however, we are going to stick with our online worship schedule via Zoom (find details here).

There are a number of reasons for this, which I am happy to discuss individually at any time. For the purposes of this meditation, let me share the obvious: that things are not normal. We are in a time of exile, where we long to see our spiritual home and feel grounded in the company of our faith community. This is a desert time, and we know from Scripture and from our own experiences that God is uniquely present when we wander and feel isolated.

We will not find ourselves in these circumstances forever. And there will be great rejoicing when we can inhabit our beautiful church and pass the peace in person once more! I am not saying our remote worship together will always take its present form. We don’t know how long this crisis will last, or how our understanding of best responses and practices will evolve. But for now, please join us as we continue to pray together separately, physically distant but bound together in the enduring love of God in Christ.