March 24, 2020
Dear People of St. Paul,
I like what one friend told me today: though a tiny, invisible thing—the corona virus—can cause us to change so many things about our lives, it cannot take away our prayer and our connection to God. We have always got the ability to reach out in love to God and to our neighbors. That is the first and greatest commandment—Love the Lord your God with your whole heart, your whole soul and your whole strength, and your whole mind, and your neighbor as yourself. If we do this, there is no doubt, we will experience life and its fullness.
Concerning the church, for a time, we are a “stay at home church.” Honestly, what is that? I don’t know about you, but I am yearning to see my church family who I see so often. I am also yearning for the covid-19 virus to leave us—the sooner the better. Who really knows just when that will be? But until the “coast is clear” and we are able to congregate again for worship and all kinds of activities, we are still church together. See Stacey’s letter about “Project Outreach” that went off without a hitch last weekend. We are also innovating our communication methods, keeping Lynn and I on our toes, believe me. We have realized that a monthly newsletter for April is just not going to be a realistic help; no one knows what to expect a month at a time. Instead, we will have weekly letters by Constant Contact and snail mail. Hopefully, you have received some encouragement and hope from our church communications.
I’d like to hear from you as well. Look for the announcements about the “Anxious for Nothing” bible study and perhaps you will want to participate, or maybe you could order Max Lucado’s book—“Anxious for Nothing” through Amazon. Call me on my cell phone if you would like to have help with this: 330-469-6296. The best time to call is between 7:00 and 9:00 pm. Or if my phone is turned off, leave a message, and I will call you back.
Starting today, as I write this, I am working from home; I am not going into the church office except for worship times, so the office phone is not the best way to reach me. Lynn is working mainly from home too. She will go in periodically each week to get mail and send out mail, and to check messages that may have been left. Otherwise, her computer at home is the real workhorse for St. Paul’s communications.
What can you expect to receive from St. Paul Church?
- There will be a weekly worship bulletin, with announcements, and a sermon. This week, however, Rev. Karl Biermann is preaching in a video sermon, and he doesn’t have a manuscript, so you will receive your next sermon for Palm Sunday.
- We are going to continue streaming the mid-week evening prayer service on Facebook, and PSCP tv “Thomas Mossor” (by computer) on March 26 and April 2.
- We will also have Sunday morning Service of the Word at 10:30 am. This can also be viewed after that “live” streaming time has ended. (Again this is by Facebook: St Paul Warren’s page, and on PSCP tv “Thomas Mossor.”
- Do you need someone to help walk you through making these connections? Both Tom Mossor 330-272-3008 and Jim Kuzman 407- 276-6492 and available BY PHONE evenings after 6:00 pm.
- Stacey is doing wonderful things with the youth. See her announcements.
- I am doing a brief mediation or devotion on Facebook ( Paul’s page) on Mon., Tues., Wed., and Friday. I post it around 10:00 am.
- By the way, Tim Martin, our custodian, is doing great work on very large jobs at the church: carpet cleaning, stripping and waxing floors, sanitizing, etc.
- Diana Bauman and I are in regular conversation, and council matters will be handled by phone and email.
- We are working on Celebrate Recovery online “Zoom” meetings; stay tuned for instructions.
I realize this is a long letter. I will make it briefer in the future.
Wishing you Christ’s love and the blessing of Almighty God,
Pastor Ann Marie
PS: Let’s keep the main thing, the main thing: Love God and your neighbor!