Updated: Mar 26
Hello friends — Can I say at the beginning, I miss you - our fellowship together is so beautiful. I hope you are well. In this time of isolation and ambiguity and threat, we are still the Church. We trust in the God who holds our past and our present and our future in his hand. He is the same God who sees our vulnerability and hears our longing and meets our isolation. We are the Church and that means we live by Spirit and rest in Grace and face life Together. We are the Church; we care for the needs of our families and we also look to reflect the generosity of God in our communities.
I am reminded of Julian of Norwich, who, when much of Europe was dying from the plague said these words over 600 years ago: "All will be well and all manner of things shall be well.” Her confidence was resting on the sustaining power and kindness of Jesus, and not fixed on the unfolding tragedy all around her. Because of that, she was able to bring hope and healing to many around her. We want you to know a few things about life in our church community amidst all the isolation around us:
We are hoping to launch a web page in the next few days that will be a regular place to go to connect with people in our church. It will be a place to share information from our leadership team, plans for meeting together online, share prayer requests, offer to help others as well as share practical needs you may have. This will be a private, invited community for Ministik Church.
Our hope was to be able to go online with a live worship gathering tomorrow, but we need a bit more time to put together the logistics of that. Our sense is that we may be in this for the long road and we need to make sure we have places for mutual encouragement, service and care. The details of that will be in place by the middle of the week and we will let you know of a trial run to take place on Thursday night, if you’d like to join - details will be forthcoming.
Connection with others is still possible. Technology has provided us the opportunity to talk and even play games face to face, but miles apart. Don’t underestimate the value of conversation, even over the phone. Texting and emailing is fine, but has significant limitations. I challenge you to pick up the phone early this week and phone two people - one person you would talk to regularly and one person you’ve been meaning to talk to or even introduce yourself to on a Sunday morning. If you’re comfortable, offer to pray for that person. If each person did that, there would be over 150 calls placed in the name of Jesus and as the voice of healing and life to people in our fellowship.
Arlene will be providing resources that you many want to use if you have young children in the house.
For tomorrow, feel free to explore resources. I’ll provide this sermon from last May by someone I love, entitled, “Embrace the Suck.” Greg Boyd is worth listening to. https://whchurch.org/sermon/embrace-the-suck/#!
I have received many updates for phone or email contacts. Please check those out and reply by tomorrow morning. I will send a final list out tomorrow afternoon.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to anyone on the Leadership Team if you have questions or concerns. We want to remind you that Mark has stepped away from the Leadership Team as part of his plan to rest and refocus. Please provide that space for him and direct your thoughts to one of our existing Leadership group. Arlene Capper - 780.885.0009 Rose Ann Mottet - 780.446.5200 Todd Sumner - 780.993.8016 Doug Siewert - 780.884.6066
I leave you with a great poem by Kitty O’Meara. Take care everyone. Keep connecting. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances.
And the people stayed home.
And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games.
And learned new ways of being, and were still. And listened more deeply. Some meditated, some prayed, some danced. Some met their shadows. And the people began to think differently. And the people healed. And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways, the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again, they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images, and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully, as they had been healed.