Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and His Son Jesus Christ.
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the cloud and the fire of God lead us and so we journey forwards into the emerging reality of our lives. We remain resolute that the future of the church is in a combination of digital and physical gatherings and worship. While the Digital ministry remains the focus of the worship life of the parish, we are compelled to open up to some physical gatherings. This is a challenging thing to do, mostly because the Pandemic is as real and the risk is in fact higher now, and the desire to just go back to what was, is higher now but these are things that we have to manage and mitigate and work through.
These are the challenges and we together as a community need to overcome them, and we will, as we develop a new normal.
When the schools opened, they had staff, in the business there are people specifically employed to deal with these issues. Here we the parishioners are those people, that need to do the work. And the workers must come from those who want the physical services, not from those who are already participating online.
As of 4 October, there will be physical gatherings again in the parish. The 4th is the feast of St Francis, and we will celebrate with a Combined (St Mary’s and Good Shepherd) outdoor service at The Church of the Good Shepherd at 09h00; the service will be live streamed on WhatsApp and ZOOM.
For now, (11 October onward) we will have a service at 09h00 every Sunday and this will be a combination of a ZOOM Service, WhatsApp service and a physical gathering at the Church of the Good Shepherd and a physical Gathering at St Mary’s Kingsburgh.
For this to work we will require a new ministry team to handle the logistics of this.
Children’s ministry is still restricted and thus families with children under 15 will need to continue on the digital platform.
Youth from 16-35 will be encouraged to attend physical gathering and assist with the running of services.
The over 65’s are encouraged to continue on the digital platform.
For those who are not attending online, I cannot stress enough how important it is for you to make a way to attend. Just buy a little data each Sunday and enter back into fellowship.
Dear people of God be assured of my prayers and my concern for you. Be assured that although these are uncertain times God is with us.
Be assured that this community in Christ is blessed by Him and has a glorious future in Christ and that as long as we pull together, we can overcome the challenges.
May the God of infinite wisdom fill you with love and mercy and courage.