Engaging the season ahead.
Dear friends and members of St. Matt's,
As you likely know, our first worship service online was on March 15th. In the two weeks leading up to that Sunday, most of us had no idea what was coming. So, it wasn't until March 12th that I made the call to move our worship online - a decision that I hoped would be temporary. In the next few weeks, we pivoted our entire program and built an online community. Within seven days, there were multiple opportunities to worship and gather. And over the next few weeks, we built out every piece of our life online - even adding to an already busy schedule with opportunities like Compline, Morning Prayer, Virtual Church School, Virtual Potlucks, Coffee Hour, quite a few adult education series, Youth Group, Music Appreciation and more. Our choir members began to bravely sing and play instruments online. And we had special worship services, complete with incredible music on days like Easter and Pentecost. In the last five months, we have tried everything from Bingo Nights to Pub Theology to an online Evening of Giving. If you've been following along, you know that it's been a busy five months - with some activity or landing place on almost every day.
I am grateful for the hard work of the staff, Vestry, and other volunteers who have helped to make our life together more rich. And I'm grateful for all the ways that you have plugged in and connected to these opportunities. I've heard from many of you that the connections you've made in this time have been even deeper and more meaningful than when we're in person - which is a testament to you and to the hard work being done to make those connections possible. I am constantly moved by the big heart of this community, by the ways you give, and by the ways you show up for each other and this place.
While we had to move quickly in March and throughout the spring, the summer affords us the chance to plan and to look ahead. I'm glad to have the chance to consider these last five months and to explore how to move ahead together. So, if you've not plugged in a lot during this time, we hope you'll tell us why. And we'd like to know what kinds of events and connections are missing for you. What would spark you to be more engaged with St. Matt's in this season? Know that it is never too late to join us and we would love to hear your ideas. If you have plugged in a lot, we'd like to know what worked, what was meaningful, and what else you'd like to see us try. Looking ahead, we'd like to find new ways to engage, and we hope that you'll feel moved to help, to lead, and to serve. While we certainly have some plans in place, we want to hear from you.
Below is a link to a survey that will help us to plan the season ahead. Please spend a few minutes prayerfully considering your faith and the life of this community. What would help you to grow? What would inspire you to be more connected? What might you want to lead? How might you want to serve?
None of us know what lies ahead in this season. What I do know is that this is a place where meaningful work continues to happen. And meaningful connections have grown deeper. As we continue to make the next safest decision for our community, I hope that you will consider seriously your role in our life together and how we might continue to grow as a community at St. Matt's, as the people God has called us to be together. I am convinced that God is unfolding good plans for us - I see it even now - in you.
Tags: Welcome from the Rector