“I want my old job back.”
I want my old life back.”
— From Zoom visits @ Church
All of the members and spirits associated with NHCC are precious to us and precious to God. And while we’re “one body,” we have distinct identities, too.
The days since Friday the thirteenth of March have been particularly complicated for parents and families with children — in single parent homes, two-worker homes, underemployed households and everything in between and beyond. Those of us who care for toddlers or students or even grown children have seen our lives change in unprecedented ways. Our apartments and houses are now schoolrooms, recreation sites, all-night gaming headquarters and sick bays. They are busy and even under pressure.
Whatever your permutation in our family of faith, we are here to support you, sustain you and inspire you, which means to insert some Spirit — our mission as a church.
We strive to do this faithfully and consistently.
One element of this moment is that our basic values and commitments in church and life can be in conflict just now. Our call in Christian families includes safety, joy and growth. But what if schoolrooms aren’t safe — including the ones for Church School? What if it is hard to be joyful when we can’t see friends beyond your building, including Confirmation or worship friends? Safety and growth should not be in conflict, but they are on a new road these months.
Part of our commitment to support, sustain and inspire you means committing to keeping covenant with God and with our whole community. This means keeping people healthy so it means also finding new ways to be church.
So, you are in our prayers. You are in our plans. Here are some plans we have:
We plan not to return to our building until it is safe.
We plan to offer outreach or “remote church” even when we start to return to the building.
We plan to continue offerings for connection and Christian education, and to continue to discover new ways to present these.
We plan to value remote worship Sunday mornings, and to offer several events in September and October so that folks can drive by, walk by or (if they want) walk through the sanctuary. These include adult discussion, ice cream distribution and a new blessing for animals — all outside.
We plan to undertake new ways to celebrate our holidays such as Re-Covenant Sunday, Back to Church School, and even Thanksgiving. We’re exploring new ways to share communion.
This note comes down to this this: if you are providing child care, home schooling or any of the range of things that children from 0 – 21 need (Okay, 21+) you are in our prayers. We all miss our friends in Christ. Some of us are bored with zoom. Some of us are at our wits’ end. So we ask this:
We need your feedback, your ideas, your requests and suggestions and also your offering of what you’ve learned and how you can help others. We ask for your ideas and we ask for your covenant.
When scripture says that everything will change in the twinkling of an eye it isn’t referring to this. But it’s true for this. Parents, families, homes have all changed. Having more time together is a blessing. But all the new dynamics are a challenge.
To repeat, you are in our prayers. And we reach out to you to plan together. Keep the faith: such eras in human history have never killed it. Plus our faith is that even “program” death does bring resurrection, so we’ll find that together.
What do you need? How can our church help? What do you offer? How can we connect?
September comes soon. God bless you every month of the year.
Wendy Donnell Kenneth Baily
Director of Christian Education Pastor