Dear Friends in Christ,
I have had several conversations with our wardens, Jason Davis and Laura Kennedy, and members of the Vestry in the past two days regarding our response to the risks posed by Covid-19. Since health officials believe the next three weeks are critical for slowing the spread of the virus, we have made the difficult decision to cancel services and other scheduled parish activities until at least the beginning of April.
In reflecting on the command of Jesus to love our neighbors, we have concluded that the best way to love in this situation is to not put anyone at risk, most especially those who are most vulnerable. I will lead Morning Prayer at 10 am Sunday on Facebook Live. There will be a number of other services being live streamed from other churches including the Washington National Cathedral where the Presiding Bishop will be preaching.
Early next week I will communicate again with suggestions about how we can stay connected in the weeks ahead, ways we can support neighborhood ministries to those who are on the margins, and remain grounded in our faith that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)
In the meantime, this prayer from the New Zealand Prayer Book may be a helpful addition to your daily prayers:
God of the present moment,
God who in Jesus stills the storm
and soothes the frantic heart;
bring hope and courage to us
as we wait in uncertainty.
Bring hope that you will make us the equal
of whatever lies ahead.
Bring us courage to endure what cannot be avoided,
for your will is health and wholeness;
you are God, and we need you. Amen.
Pray for me as I pray for each and every one of you and please do not hesitate to contact me should you have questions or concerns or simply need a listening ear.
The Rev. Mary C. Carson