“Strengthen, O Lord, with your Holy Spirit, your servant; empower her for your service; and sustain her all the days of her life.” AMEN! (BCP p.178)
‘The Anglican Church requires a public and personal profession of the Faith from every adult believer in Jesus Christ. Confirmation or Reception by a Bishop is its liturgical expression. In Confirmation, though the Bishop’s laying on of hands and prayer for daily increase in the Holy Spirit, God strengthens the believer fro Christian life in the service of Christ and His Kingdom.’ (from the Preface to Confirmation, BCP p. 174)
Our bishop, John Guernsey, will be joining us this weekend. We have a number of people who are confirming the promises that were made at their baptism or being received into the Anglican Communion. The words that Bishop John prays during this liturgy are full of power and hope. I always look forward to his visit and his leadership among us.
As a reminder, here is what to expect as we reopen Restoration:
At the 9am, we ask you to sign up for one of the 23 socially distanced seating pods. Everyone who is aged 2 and up will wear a face-covering inside. The liturgy for Confirmation and Reception will happen inside. Then we will transition outside, under the tent, for the liturgy of Holy Eucharist at 10:15. Face-coverings are optional for everyone, during the Eucharist, when we are outside.
Remember, at the 9am, we have Kids’ Small Groups that meet over Zoom. They start right at 9.
We also have Kids’ Small Groups, outside, under the tent, for those who are attending in person. Kids will start in the sanctuary and then transition to the tent. During Kids’ Small Groups, everyone under the tent (both adults and kids) will wear face-coverings. Parents will meet their kids under the tent at 10:15 for Eucharist.
At the 11am, you may sit in the sanctuary wherever you like. Face-coverings are not required inside the sanctuary for anyone who is two weeks past their full vaccination. The liturgy for Confirmation and Reception, along with the liturgy for Holy Eucharist, will be inside. Although, you do not have to sign up for seating in the sanctuary, you do need to sign up for your kids to participate in Kids’ Small Groups. Kids will start in the sanctuary and then transition to the tent. During Kids’ Small Groups, everyone under the tent (both adults and kids) will wear face-coverings. Kids will return to the sanctuary during the Parish Announcements to join their parents for the Eucharist.
Parish Meeting after the 11am Service
After the 11am service (around 12:45), we will have a Parish Meeting. We do this a few times each year as a way to update you on our finances, on changes, and to set expectations for what the next few months may hold. This will be the first one we have had in person since the pandemic. I am looking forward to partnering with our wardens, treasurer, and executive director in sharing the things God is doing in our congregation. This is also a great chance for you to ask questions. If Restoration is your church home, please plan to either join us in person, in the sanctuary, at 12:45 or to watch remotely on our YouTube channel (You can ask questions on the YouTube chat as well).
Morning and Evening Prayer
March 15, 2020 was our first remote Sunday of worship over Zoom. On March 16, 2020 I hosted Morning and Evening Prayer over Zoom. Then. for the next 15 months, a great team of ‘service leaders’ facilitated Morning and Evening Prayer, Monday through Friday, every week. It has been one the great gifts of grace during this pandemic, a ringing note of redemption. I have loved it and loved the community that has been built in our Zoom room.
So, with that strange mixture of sadness and expectation that seems to always accompany change, I am writing to announce that we are drawing this special season of daily Morning and Evening prayer over Zoom to a close on Friday, June 18. It is important that we say thank you for the unique graces that God gave during the pandemic. It is also important to recognize that in their nature of being ‘special’ and ‘unique’, they are not necessarily meant to be ‘on-going’ and ‘forever’. I believe that if we cease some of the good things God gave us in the pandemic, there will be opportunities for new good things to grow and to happen as we embrace what God has for us next.
If Morning and Evening Prayer has been a regular part of your weekly rhythm, thank you! Your presence and participation has been a blessing to me. Let’s be intentional to give thanks together over the two weeks that we have left. If you heard about this daily opportunity, but haven’t tried it, or haven’t tried it in a while, come back and say thank you with us for the ways God provided over the last 15 months. For a couple more weeks, you will find us on Zoom, every Monday to Friday, at 8 and 5. Thanks be to God.
A Morning of Reflection and Rest
Finally, as we finish this academic year and continue to move towards reopening, Restoration wants to offer you a morning to reflect and to rest– to not miss what God has done in you and through you during this pandemic.
When: Saturday, June 26, 9:30a – 12:00p
What should you expect?
A chance to reflect on these questions and others, to sit with the Lord.
How is it with your soul? What has God been doing in your life these past 15 months – are they a blur or full of vivid memories? What would you like to hold on to? What would you like to release? What is He inviting you into?
Come reflect and rest. We will spend some time together in God’s word, on our own reflecting and journaling, and then together again sharing with one another.
Coffee and pastries at 9:15. We will get going at 9:30a.
One of the ways that I see the rich mercy and abundant love of God is by living life with you. God has sustained us and poured out His grace among us. I am looking forward to our weekend together- both in the sanctuary and over YouTube live. See you soon!