When we postponed our annual yard sale from May to September, we had hoped that the COVID-19 pandemic would be under much better control. Unfortunately, the virus is still very much with us. After much discussion and out of an abundance of concern for the well-being of our vendors, patrons, and congregational volunteers, we have decided to cancel the sale for this year.
As we stated in our letter in March, we appreciate your response to our annual sale. We will keep your application and deposit and apply them to next spring’s sale, now scheduled for May 1, 2021. If you are uncertain about your future plans and wish to cancel your reservation, please email us at: email@example.com and we will refund your deposit.
Thank you again for your continued support of our annual sale. Stay home, stay safe and stay healthy. We look forward to seeing you on May 1, 2021.
Sincerely, Robert Slade Chairperson, Holy Spirit Community Yard Sale
…it is no fun presiding at worship wearing a face mask and a shield.
…it is no fun not singing.
…it is no fun waving across the aisle at the sharing of the peace.
…and it is really no fun not having coffee after worship.
…it is faithful to care for our neighbors.
…it is faithful to protect our neighbors.
…it is faithful to use the precautions that are proven effective.
…it is faithful to be a community at worship, no matter the
The church and these health precautions are gifts from God to help us maintain community and, also honestly, to keep people alive. As we continue to worship in person and online, we will continue to use these gifts, in thanksgiving to God, with whom we are connected forever.
“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).
Help support the Hempfield Food Pantry Saturday, August 8, from 9 a.m. until noon. Just drive up to the front door of the church and place your donation onto the cart that will be located on the sidewalk. Simple!
1 or 2 lb. packs of rice
Canned tomatoes, peas, kidney beans and soup (no chicken noodle)
Canned fruit (no fruit cocktail or mandarin oranges)
No glass items, please!
Thank you for your continued witness to assist the hungry of this community.
We have been waiting for this day for some time. All of us have been watching as Lancaster County went from the “red” to the “yellow” and finally into the “green” status. It was impossible to consider any sort of reopening until the green phase was achieved.
Now that it has happened, we are looking forward to being back together. Being able to meet does not mean going back to the way things were in January. There will be no slacking off from making sure that our building and more importantly, you, can worship as safely as possible. Therefore, when you come to worship this summer, things will look and happen differently.
It starts with entering the building. There will be one set of doors dedicated for entrance, and another set dedicated for exit. Everyone is to bring a face mask to church. If you forget to bring one, there will be a supply available for you to use and take home. Hand sanitizer will be everywhere.
Inside, distancing will be followed. Every other pew will be roped off and not used. Tape will be on the floor, six feet apart, to guide us. There will be no coffee time or lemonade socials this summer.
Paper bulletins will be available, however the weekly bulletin will be also be emailed through the Ministry Minute network. You are encouraged to use your electronic device to view the order of service.
Liturgically, the service will be shortened, but we will still follow our historic pattern of gathering/word/meal and sending. Passing the peace will be different as we will stay at our place and wave. Other liturgical changes , including the distribution of the Holy Communion will be part of the pre-service announcements and printed in the bulletin.
The most noticeable change in the liturgy will be that there will be no singing or chanting. Allison is preparing some familiar music for you to tap your feet to, and even hum. And the number of spoken congregational responses are reduced.
And the room will be airy! The glass doors will be opened, and other doors as well will be open to promote fresh air. We are fortunate that the architecture of our building lends itself to being very open.
We grieve not be able to do those things we are familiar with. But remember: worship is what we make it and the effort that we put into it. God will be honored. Jesus will be praised. The Holy Spirit will be supporting us in our effort.
It may take a little time for some of you to feel comfortable returning to worship. That’s OK. And if you are sick or just getting over an illness, do not come to worship. We pray that our area will not fall back into the yellow phase. We pray that we will be able to worship in person. Those prayers will be answered by our persistence in our collective love for the neighbor. A command which comes to us from Jesus himself.
There was once was a time when I was in good enough condition that I could have run a marathon. Now I can barely run two houses down and back.
There was once a time I could remember every little detail. Now you should see the slips of paper with reminders and notes I keep taped on the wall of my office at home.
Sometimes you just have to do things differently. Sometimes you just have to have more help to function well.
Which is precisely what we have been doing during this pandemic. It has been necessary to do some things differently. And by the looks of things, we will be in this different mode for many more months.
And so we prepare to resume in-person worship on July 5. This is a good thing. And we are also going to be very careful in making sure that in our worship we will do whatever is necessary to keep us safe. This too is a good thing.
On the next couple pages of this newsletter you will read of some of the different things that will occur. In addition to providing enough space, and opening up the nave to more fresh air, and even shortening the time length of the service (shorter sermons??) the most important thing to do, to care for one another, is to bring your face mask to church. It is proven to be an effective safety device, or as I like to call it, a measure of care. You can find many scientific articles that bear this out. But I’m coming at it from a theological perspective. It is a faithful thing to do.
It expresses care for the neighbor, which Jesus spoke a lot about. It also helps us live up to the meaning of the fifth commandment, the one about don’t kill. Martin Luther wrote in his explanation of this commandment that, “We should not harm anyone.” We violate the commandment when we, “fail to prevent, protect and save (him) from bodily harm or injury.” We are to show to everyone, “Kindness and love.”
I look forward to seeing you again in worship. And expressing together our gratitude to God and our care for the neighbor.