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Faith & Worship
At 3 p.m. Eastern Time on Wednesday, the Office of Vital Congregations will continue its weekly Zoom conversations around “The Seven Marks of a Vital Congregation: For Such a Time as This.”
G.W. Rolle, pastor of justice ministries at The Missio Dei, a new worshiping community in the Presbytery of Tampa Bay, is in his second week of a self-imposed quarantine.
Online worship that’s intimate, meaningful, inclusive — and, at the same time, can be touching and even humorous?
Now that the Office of the General Assembly has issued a new advisory opinion from the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, the Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), saying that churches can hold online or virtual communion during an emergency/pandemic, the church’s Office of Theology and Worship has released the statement, “Celebrating the Sacraments in a Time of Emergency/Pandemic.”
Hagar’s Community Church, a 1001 New Worshiping Community in Olympia Presbytery located inside the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW), is currently unable to meet for worship due to social distancing required inside the prison during the COVID-19 health crisis.
As 300 people, including a pastor from Ireland, gathered via Zoom for conversation on best practices for streaming worship services, the host, the Rev. Marthame Sanders, began by asking for grace to abound — and that those gathered would remember that nothing can separate us from God’s love.
As she pondered how to lead worship while keeping the safety of congregants who may be affected by COVID-19 uppermost in her mind, the Rev. Lynn Rubier-Capron remembered her childhood, when she used to see movies at the drive-in.
The Office of Theology and Worship has developed an order of worship, available here, that’s been adapted for congregations gathering exclusively or primarily online in response to the coronavirus.
On Monday, pastors and other leaders from dozens of churches were eager to share their most recent virtual worshiping experiences from the day before, and the Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow was up to the task.
Both the 2020 Vital Congregations facilitator training and national gathering in Austin, scheduled for April 24-30, have been postponed. The Office of Vital Congregations in the Presbyterian Mission Agency is looking at the possibility of rescheduling the event in August 2020.