Episco-Fact #179
March 12, 2020

FRANCISCO-FACT: Does church ever get cancelled?

Unfortunately, yes. Regular Sunday worship is an important way to build worship habits and grow spiritually. It is the time and place where the People of God, locally expressed, gather to hear God's Word, give their thanks, express their needs, and to share in Christ, together. Cancellations are disruptive. But there are times when it happens and should: hurricanes, blizzards, tornados, floods, and plague (or COVID-19).

This coming Sunday the Bishop has issued a pastoral directive not to hold services of public worship, which means that it must be followed. It is her judgment that slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus is part of our communal responsibility of our churches to their communities. Public worship is an obligation to God, and consideration for our neighbors by not spreading the virus is a Christian response to that love.

Because we live in this technically advanced time, we have options for gathering via streaming. St. Francis is working on one such option and will be conveying information in the next couple of days to allow you connect to a Morning Prayer Office this Sunday at 9:00 AM. We will distribute that information on our website and via email to those whose emails we have. Additionally, Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop will be live streaming worship from the National Cathedral (which is closed on Sunday). The link is

 

Our church namesake had a prayer for anxious times which we offer for you today: Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

 

 David