COVID-19 Update

COVID-19 Update – Friday, November 20, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

You’ve probably already heard about yesterday’s new health order targeting social interactions.  Amongst the activities targeted by this order are church services.  The order is in place until December 7th, which means we are forced to suspend our Sunday services and Bible study groups for the next three weeks.  You can read the details of the health order here.

This affords all of us an opportunity to flex our family worship muscles as we are forced to be apart.  I encourage you to open your Prayer Books as families, couples, or singly on Sundays and pray together through Morning Prayer or Family Prayer.  Read the Scripture lessons for the day and talk about them and meditate on them.  Pray for each other, for the Church, and for our world and our leaders.  I will continue to post the sermon on the website where you can read the text or listen to an MP3.  I will see about the possibility of recording video for these weeks that we are unable to meet.  Check our Facebook page for posts and updates and, if videos work out, our YouTube page.

The Scripture lessons for the next three Sunday can be found here:

The Sunday Next Before Advent (November 22nd)

The First Sunday in Advent (November 29th)

The Second Sunday in Advent (December 6th)

I trust that being apart will foster a greater appreciation for our times of corporate worship. Advent is a season of preparation for the coming King and, this year, will also serve as a time to increase our longing for the time, Lord willing only a few weeks away, when we can come together again.

This health order impacts only our gatherings for worship and Bible study.  I will continue to keep office hours at the church and will be available in person and by phone if you need me.  If you need Prayer Books for family worship, we have them at the church, both the traditional book and booklets in modern language.  If there’s anything else I can do to help during this time, don’t hesitate to contact me.

You can still drop your offerings off at the church or drop them through the mail slot if I’m not there.  Online giving continues to be an option.  Interact transfers can be sent to giving@livingwordrec.ca.  You can also give through Canada Helps.  Your continued support is appreciated.

Lastly, stay in touch with each other.  Exhort each other to love and good works.  Call each other for encouragement.  This forced social isolation is very difficult for many of us.  Fellowship with each other as you are able, whether by phone or the Internet.  To that end I have attached a copy of the parish directory.  Please do not abuse this list or share its contents with anyone outside the parish.

May our ever-present Lord strengthen and encourage you in these difficult days.

Bill+

COVID-19 Update – Thursday, March 19, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I want to keep you abreast of developments as they impact our church family.  As of now we are still planning to meet for worship on Sunday.  We are below the threshold established by the BC Ministry of Health and the church provides enough room for us to maintain “social distance”.  Rob and I have made the decision to continue, after consultation with Bp. Sutton.  As I noted in the last email, we will be suspending Coffee Hour for the time being and will distribute only the bread in the Communion.

We will continue our livestream of the Litany each evening at 7pm on the church’s Facebook page.  We tried moving it to YouTube so that more people could access it, but after many hours of work to get it going it still didn’t work and I’m not getting any answers and can’t afford to invest any more time in it.  If you’d like to join us in person, we can accommodate a few people at a time.  Just contact me by phone or email to confirm. We’d love to have you.

John and I have fielded a number of questions regarding giving at this time.  I’m thankful that you are still thinking of this.  COVID-19 may force us to change the way we do things, but our budget needs do not change.  I’ve consulted with John.  Because of the need to maintain a paper trail—yes, even in this digital age it’s still necessary—the preferred means of giving is still by cheque.  If you are unable to be with us on Sunday, you can still drop cheques off at the church during the week.  If I’m not there, they can safely be deposited through the mail slot in the front door.  You can also mail them.  Our address is 4778 Island Highway North, Courtenay V9N 5Y7.  As far as electronic giving goes, John tells me that his preference is for giving through Canada Helps or directly through PayPal.  Etransfers are also an option.  (Note that PayPal and Canada Helps both charge us a percentage of donations as a fee.)  PayPal and transfers should be sent to giving@livingwordrec.ca.  You can give through Canada Helps here:

https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/living-word-episcopal-church/

I’ve also been asked about online sermons.  Sermons audio and text are available on the church website:

http://livingwordrec.ca

The most recent sermons can be found at the bottom of the main page.  Clicking on the title will call up the page for that sermon.  You’ll find an audio player near the top.  The page also includes the text and if you click under “Sermon Notes” you can access a PDF with the text in a printer-friendly format.

May the blessing of the Lord be with you all in these difficult days.

Bill+