September 25, 2020
Dear Grace Church Member,
If you are like me, you miss church. You miss passing the peace, sharing communion, and gathering at coffee hour. What began as two weeks of quarantine, turned into a couple of months, and now we continue down an uncertain path. While we cannot predict the texture and circumstances of our congregational life in the months ahead, we can prepare for the sacred opportunities ahead of us.
As I remind everyone before the prayer of spiritual communion each Sunday, “Wherever you are, it is indeed holy ground.” Certainly, we miss the holiness of our sanctuary but we are learning that God is not contained within four walls. God is not only with us when we kneel at the altar rail but God is also with us when we sit at our kitchen tables, coffee cup in hand, and listen to a live stream of our worship service. God is not only with us as we sing together from the pews but God is also with us when we sing out of tune in the privacy of our backyards.
We are learning so much about the expansiveness of God’s holy and sacred ground during this time. And, it requires that we faithfully discern how we are being called to reframe our ministry and outreach during COVID-19. Already this year, we have:
- Created online opportunities for worship each Sunday, expanding our ministry beyond Goochland
- Provided resources to worship from home
- Modified our in-person service to a socially distant outdoor experience
- Personally contacted as many households in our congregation as possible
- Continued the monthly Community Prayer Service and Election Prayer Service online
- Completed a summer bible study and began a fall study
- Launched a new women’s group
- Delivered meals and inspirational packages to our members and friends
- Started a 6-month study on racial reconciliation called Becoming Beloved Community
- Hosted Maria Maguire, our summer intern
- Filled 20 backpacks for school children
- Conducted front porch visits when appropriate
Even in times like these, we have worked hard to spread God’s love in whatever way possible. I am heartened by the strength and resiliency of our church family.
As we begin our stewardship campaign, I ask that you consider your financial contribution to Grace for the upcoming year. Enclosed is your 2021 Pledge Card. Between now and October 25th please prayerfully consider your pledge. Our financial health will be critical to sustain the vibrant ministries we have worked so hard to build. Let’s keep the walls of our church expanding outward, meeting the needs of our community, and sharing God’s love in these ever changing times.
Grace and Peace,
Emily Dunevant Kate Sarfaty
Rector Senior Warden