As individuals and as part of various communities, we have all felt the impact of the isolation of the pandemic. St. John’s has maneuvered through the pandemic years with the guidance of our Bishop, Diocese and CDC guidelines. Gradually we have begun to make our way back together, still mindful of Covid trends.
When we stopped our Sunday worship service, I immediately felt the loss of our community interaction and, in my case, family interaction. The brakes slammed to a sudden stop on a weekly practice that has been a part of my entire life … going to St. John’s for the second service on Sunday morning. I missed seeing those I am close to and those I know informally. As Altar Guild chairman, I even missed laundering the linens every week and setting up the altar when I was on the schedule. The life we took for granted had changed and we were in uncharted territory.
And now, finally, we have the opportunity to come together as a community on Sunday mornings at 7:45 and 9:30! It has been such a pleasure (and feeling of returning to “normal”) to sit in the sanctuary in person. The technology that is in place for remote viewing of the service is here to stay and serves those who for one reason or another choose to watch from home. I am thankful to return to an in-person service; it agrees with me to be back in the sanctuary. I feel like I am in a sacred space and feel the reverence of the sanctuary. To experience our clergy, music, sacraments and each other is rejuvenating and starts my week off on a positive and uplifting note!
Coffee Hour is another good reason to come back in person! Engaging in conversation with others over a cup of coffee draws us in to a deeper connection with our community. Joining socially allows us to build relationships and feel included in our church family.
We are so fortunate to have such a beautiful church home, inside and outside. Our congregation is full of compassionate and caring people from all walks of life. The music on Sundays has never sounded so beautiful and the messages we receive from our fabulous clergy are thoughtful, inspiring and where we find deeper meaning in our lives. Attending in person allows me to join our church community, connect through the music and participate in communion. When we attend in-person we are supporting our clergy, musicians, readers, and all who contribute to the worship service. If you haven’t been back in person, please consider doing so … it will do wonders for your mind, body and spirit. It is a time to listen, to give thanks, find guidance and acceptance. I can’t think of a better place to spend Sunday morning!