First of all, thank you all for your flexibility and willingness to adapt and participate in the online worship services that are for now the new normal. We will need to continue to be patient. One question floating around out there is if and when it will be possible to return to in-person worship in some form. The Salem Council has 'closed' the church until June 17, and what happens after that remains unclear. A PDF document provided by the ELCA (see bottom of this article) provides a picture of what a re-opening process could look like as circumstances allow. I invite you to take a look at this link and read through the document. If anything, I hope that it will help you to better understand the facts we are dealing with so that you can continue to have patience with the process.
Our options for gathering safely to worship for the foreseeable future will not look or feel like the familiar experience of worship that we have known. We need to be honest with ourselves about what we might be hoping for. That said, we can be thankful that it is still possible to worship together the way we are. I will do everything I can to keep that as pleasant and attainable for folks as possible.
The important thing right now is to think long-term, because what we choose to do or not do will have a consequence for our congregation and our community. The coming weeks will be a real-life experiment of what happens as businesses open up and people are out and about more. Folks need to get back to work and the economy needs to heal. Sooner or later, we will get through this. Let's please be patient.
You can also download a copy below.