After much prayerful discernment with staff and the Chair of the Board, and in keeping with the United Church of Canada’s Emergency Response Plan and governmental directives and guidelines, Cedar Park United Church is suspending all community gatherings, including Sunday worship, all in-house ministry programming, and weekday gatherings, until at least Tuesday, March 31.
Here’s the message from Elizabeth Chown-Lafrenière, our Church Administrator, that was sent out on March 13, 2020:
We invite you to worship at home this Sunday. At 10:00 AM, light a candle in your home and pray for one another. The scripture reading is Exodus 17:1-7. To read the full bulletin, click here. Rev. Elisabeth will be recording her sermon and I will send you the link tomorrow that you may choose to listen to or read on Sunday. Continuing our Lenten theme of Life Choices, her sermon is entitled Is God with Us, or Not? (And How Will We Know?) And yes, that title was chosen weeks ago. God works in mysterious ways.
Here’s a note from Rev. Elisabeth:
The staff team met this morning to put in place various strategies that will help us remain connected with one another during this global health crisis. Even though we cannot gather together in close proximity, we can pray for one another, check in with each other by phone and email, and care for each other and our neighbours to alleviate the isolation that this period of community ‘shut down’ can cause or increase. To that end, we are creating geographic “Caring Clusters” and you’ll hear more about that on Tuesday. The staff will continue to be working to support our faith community at distance, via social media–particularly our Facebook page— and by email and phone.
Above all, as we have done in recent crises, let’s remember who we are: a community called to share the generous abundant love of God made evident in the flesh, bone, heart and soul of Jesus Christ. We will be learning how to do that in new ways in the coming days, to be sure, but let’s focus our best efforts to tempering fear with clear, fact-based information, and to care for one another through prayer, and open-hearted connection.
Facts not fear. Clean hands. Open hearts. (Abdu Sharkawy)