Dear Friends in Christ,


“Pastor, when are we going to open our church?” Is the question that comes up in almost every conversation I have when I go out in public.


I am with you.  I miss you and long to be with you in worship in our sanctuary but it is important to remember that although our building may be locked the church has never closed.  The church is the body of Christ and we have never stopped being church.  We continue to worship on-line, congregation callers, have had GIFT program, bible study, and coffee time.  We continue to provide pastoral care, and be there for families as they grieve the loss of loved ones.  While we miss in person worship and Holy Communion, it is important to remember that we continue to be the church.


There has been a great deal of disagreement on state and federal government guidance on how, when and where people can safely gather. All of this has sparked conflict and division. As people of faith, Jesus taught us how to respond in all situations in John 13:34-35—“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  We will continue to be church by actively choosing to love our neighbor in all we do. 


A COVID Strategic Team (some health professionals, educators, business professionals, and other leaders in the two churches) are meeting regularly to go over the latest recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Public Health, the ELCA, the SWMN Synod and church insurance company recommendations.  There are many things that must be considered before we reopen, and that we are committed to for the safety and wellbeing of everyone.  The last thing we want to do is gather and then be a cause for an outbreak where we would get sick or die because we worshipped to soon  


After going over the latest information - even though some of brothers and sisters are gathering for worship.  We will continue to worship on-line for the time being.  Our group will evaluate our status every 2-3 weeks.  We are preparing the church building for our return, ordering supplies, and working on safety practices that will need to be put in place so we can safely worship.  We are looking at possibilities for outdoor worship services in the future but nothing has been set yet.   We will resume communion on June 7th as part of our on-line worship.  Families will be invited to bring bread/crackers and wine/ grape juice to join us for communion.  If you do not have access to on-line worship please let me know and try to find other ways for you to commune as well. 


I continue to hold each of you in prayer each week.  Remember we are physically distancing because we are loving our neighbor.  Don’t hesitate to call if you need anything and make sure that you check in on your neighbor with calls, prayers, and notes. 


Be safe! Beloved Children of God. 


 Pastor Krista

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