I have challenging but important news to share. On March 17, our Bishop wrote a letter directing all churches to cease in-person gatherings until May 10. You can find that directive here. This means all church meetings, all renter events, and all worship services until that date are cancelled, including both Easter and Holy Week services.
What do we do now?
Despite the fact that for the next 8 weeks we will not be together in person, we remain committed to being church! We will still care for each other, connect with each other, and worship together.
- Soon, each of us will begin receiving a weekly phone call from a Vestry member to share information and check-in.
- I am working on offering an online Bible study class beginning next week (details to follow).
- And we will continue to have services online using Facebook Live at 10 a.m. on Sundays and at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday through Friday. Go to our Facebook page to participate and to watch videos of past services. You don’t have to have a Facebook account to participate.
Right now, things are happening quickly, changing every few days. I will make sure new notes go out to all of you regularly. Please do not hesitate to call, text, or write. I am holding you all in prayer.
And I ask you to remain attentive to your own prayer life. Having found ourselves forced into the Lenten discipline of less, make room for it. Do the deep, healing work that can only happen when we slow down and listen. Find time every day to get some fresh air, have a good conversation, eat something healthy, and say your prayers. A Sabbath, a break from our lives, is a commandment from God.
Almighty God, who after the creation of the world rested from all your works and sanctified a day of rest for all your creatures: Grant that we, putting away all earthly anxieties, may be duly prepared for the service of your sanctuary, and that our rest here upon earth may be a preparation for the eternal rest promised to your people in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
- A Collect for the Sabbath from Morning Prayer II, Book of Common Prayer, p. 99
Thursday, March 12, 2020
This evening, following the recommendation of our Bishop Whayne Hougland for “social distancing” as a way to lessen the impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus, the Vestry and I decided to suspend Sunday worship services at Holy Trinity for the rest of March. Continue reading ““Live” services cancelled for the month of March”
How do we invite people to come worship with us?
How do we welcome them when they first come through our doors?
How do we connect with them in the work of our congregation?
Hi, it’s Lynne Homeyer. When Peter was going to seminary in California, I attended a two-hour version of this workshop offered by the Diocese of California, and it was full of simple ideas for inviting, welcoming and engaging with new people.
Now the Diocese of Western Michigan is offering us the opportunity to attend the full one-day workshop, and Peter and our Senior Warden, Debbie Murphy, and I will be going to Midland, Michigan on May 4 – and I’m excited! BUT It would be great to have some folks who have been at Holy Trinity for awhile come with us, too, particularly anyone who is interested in our welcoming, outreach and hospitality ministries.
Let our Priest-in-Charge, Peter Homeyer, know if you’re interested? We need to register in advance so we’ll have materials and a lunch waiting for us!
Event details on the Diocese of Eastern Michigan website
Invite Welcome Connect website
“We have been invited to dance, y’all.”
In Bishop Hougland’s address at last October’s Diocesan Convention, he invited our diocese to begin a process of discernment around our relationship with our neighbor on the Eastern coast of the lower peninsula – the Episcopal Diocese of Eastern Michigan.
At this year’s three regional Bishop Workshops, we’ll spend some time learning and listening, joined by friends from our neighboring diocese. We also will spend some time in prayer and worship, because it is at the core of who we are. And we will spend some time in discussion, imagining what it may be like to dive into intentional conversation with our friends to the East and to share a bishop (me) during that time.
This is an exciting time to be an Episcopalian and an Episcopalian in this place. Please register and join us at the Central Region workshop.
Saturday, March 2, 2019
Doors open at 9:30, program begins at 10 a.m., ends at 3 p.m.
St. Andrews’s Episcopal Church, 1025 3 Mile Road NE, Grand Rapids, 49505