An Update from our Bishops on COVID-19
Dear friends and members of St. Matt's,
For a lot of people, a string of lights reminds them of Christmas. But they always remind me of summer; of those days when the light lingers a little longer, and you want to string up some lights outside to take advantage of better weather, to brighten the dark, to savor the sweetness of time together. That twinkling light, which moves with the breeze, and lights the night is my favorite part of summer.
Even though it's not quite summer yet, tomorrow is May 20th. Tomorrow, some things in Connecticut will begin to open. It is also the day that the Bishops marked on the calendar for us several months ago, recommending that we be closed at least until May 20th. And now it's here, and we're turning our eyes towards summer. Some of you have already reached out to ask about what summer holds for us. And while I can't entirely answer that question, there are a few things I want to share with you.
At the end of last week, our Bishops released further recommendations about how to proceed. Among them is a new date. Our life together will continue to be virtual at least through June 20th. In my conversations with our Bishops, they have been clear to say that this may not be the only extension of time - the day may be pushed out further, depending on the recommendations of the Governor and the CDC in relation to houses of worship.
At St. Matt's, we will continue to follow the recommendations of the Bishops, the Governor, and the CDC. And we will continue to move one step at a time, making the next safest possible decision. In the coming weeks, your Vestry and I will consider together some of the challenges that lie ahead of us. And when there is information to share about worship, programming, or life within our walls, I will share it with you. Until then, please know that every decision we make, every recommendation from the Bishops, every guideline from the Governor is intended to help keep you and our larger community safe.
We are blessed that in the midst of this strange season, we have built a robust life online. I'm grateful to the clergy and staff team for their very good work, for their tireless efforts, and for the fact that they have put everything else on hold to create, translate, and continue to maintain a full life for this community. I'm grateful to our lay leaders: the many committees, everyone who coordinates and participates in worship, Vestry members, and Officers who continue to work diligently to ensure the life of the whole place is strong. And I'm grateful to you, for sharing this journey with us, for your continued support of St. Matt's, and for the ways in which so many of you have already chosen to connect. I am so moved by you and all that you're doing to help others in this difficult season. For me, you are that string of lights, each one of you offering the light you can to this community, moving with the breeze as we adjust, offering a chance to find sweetness even in the midst of this time. I am grateful for the light you bring to my life and to our community. Together, we will continue to travel through this time. And I am confident that there will be a time when we will emerge from this season to enjoy the light together. I can't tell you how much I am aching for that time.
I know that this time is wearing on all of us. I also know that God has given us everything we need to make our way through this time together. So, please, continue to walk through this season with us. If you haven't connected to Coffee Hour, Church School, Youth Group, or Music Appreciation, or any other opportunity yet, it's not too late. If you need help with the technology piece, please let me or someone else know so that we can try to help you. If you need to have a pastoral conversation with me, if you just want to have coffee and check in, or if you need anything else, please be in touch to set up a time. And as always, I'm available to talk more about all this and answer any questions you might have. Together, our light is very bright, bright enough even to light the dark corners of this time. God loves you, and so do I.