June 30, 2020 Message
Dear Members and Friends,
Well, were you surprised to be part of a virtual baptism this past Sunday? Most of the participants… parents, grandparents, brothers, and sisters seemed pleased and Fiona and Brielle were very precious… BUT, some observers were not happy. Chief among them was my daughter Sarah who was quick to chastise me about the lack of safety precautions and risky behavior exhibited by… mostly me. “No mask at times, shaking hands, touching your face, no hand sanitizer…what were you thinking!?” To be fair, members of Session also raised concerns about giving a mixed message about public worship, when will it start? What is our plan? What is the goal and when is the target date that we can worship together again? I have asked Pete Cosentino, chair of the Administration and Finance Committee of the Session to address these questions. Here is how Pete responded.
"With the dawn of each new day, we are all experiencing new trials and tribulations that this pandemic brings to us. In light of these unprecedented times, we face new challenges each day. We follow the advice of those with knowledge and experience with such matters only to be challenged by the uncertainty of our own beliefs and lack of trust in those who advise us.
Our primary focus right now is to decide how to best serve our church family, the best way we know-how. In light of the size of our church, it would be difficult to maintain the recommended social distancing with the congregation. Until we are able to create a safe environment, we will continue to depend on our live streaming Facebook service and recorded YouTube.
I have observed John as he navigates through these various difficult decisions. I know that there are not many who could carry this responsibility with as much devotion and patience as he has.
Currently, we are working on preparations to allow small groups to meet together within the rules and guidelines. An example of these thoughts are the twelve-step program and the opening of the thrift shop. May we all remain joined together in these efforts as we take one day at a time."
- Pete Cosentino for the Administration and Finance Committee of Session
Members of the Church are welcome to join in Committee Meetings and the Session meeting as observers. Please contact the office to be included in the “invitation” to the Zoom application by which you can participate. It's really easy, but you need to have a computer with a camera and a microphone (most laptops are already equipped!). You can also join in by phone but can only “listen”.
Meanwhile, we are in day 95 of the Covid19 Pandemic that is still very much with us and very real for many people, especially our health care first responders. The names of many of those connected to our congregation are our CONCERNS list.
Please join us LIVE on Sunday Mornings at 10:00 am for singing, 10:15 am for worship. Use this link www.facebook.com/brigchurch.org. You don’t have to be on Facebook to join the worship.
Keep Anne Howe in your prayers as she recovers from pneumonia. We are glad she is able to stay at home with her daughter Stephanie. Keep Barb Culver in your prayers too! Prayers for CODI house and Diane Lane. Beth Welsh is undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Betty Dillon Breeden undergoing treatment for pancreatic cancer.
The Food Pantry Ministry continues. Call Brenda at (609) 266-7942 to help!
The BASKETS ARE READY! And will be on display out in front of the church on Saturdays from 8 AM to 1 PM under the big tent! Come on out, bring your friends, buy the tickets and take a chance. Don’t forget to wear a mask to show how much you love one another! The drawing for baskets will take place at the end of the month and you can attend… online… to see if you are a winner! We are still hoping to collect Gift Certificates for local vendors to be placed in prize baskets both in July and August.
The CHURCH WEBSITE is www.brigchurch.org. Check it for updates, announcements, and info.
Don’t forget, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or on my email at email@example.com. My cell phone is (609) 457-2999… feel free to call or text.
If you are a Facebook member, find us at “Brigantine Community Presbyterian Church” and “LIKE” us! Call Jim Walker, chair of Member Care, at (609) 338-225 - OR - call Mental Health HELPLINE at (866) 202-5357! If you are stressed out.
Stay in touch with each other. That is everyone’s job!