The Session wanted to relay to you some of our discussions about worship as we head into the fall and Advent and Christmas. We have been worshiping via Zoom for 7 months now, and we have begun to have a small group of people back in the worship space.
In the short term, we will continue holding a hybrid worship service. Many of you are most comfortable for your health and the health of those you love worshiping from home via Zoom or Youtube. Others have trouble with Zoom, either with the software or the internet connection. For those of you for whom Zoom is problematic, you are invited to come worship inside the building wearing a mask and observing social distancing, while obeying the posted flow charts about your health (posted at the doors, and attached). We may also be screening for temperatures. If things are unsafe in the region, we will notify you that we are cancelling in person worship. Otherwise, consider the invitation extended for Sunday worship.
In the long term, the former Strategic Planning committee is morphing into the Moving Forward committee, and they are tasked with figuring out how we can move back into the sanctuary for worship while maintaining our online worship presence. This is going to take some testing and some thinking and some changes to our space, some of which may have been unthinkable a year ago. Over the long term, our hybrid worship will become our normal worship, and that means worship from the sanctuary that reaches out into the room and out into the world.
In the time ahead, we are making some provisions for our Advent and Christmas worship. Music and imagery play a strong role in those worship experiences, and we are working to make sure that our worship reflects the power of the story of the preparation for and the birth of Christ in the Scriptural narrative, the decorations of our setting, and the songs of faith. To this end, we’ll be working on a cantata that is largely prerecorded, and a prerecorded Christmas Eve service, and an in person Longest Night service. More information on all of these will follow. Our top concern was offering an experience of worship that allows for worship in heart, mind, and body throughout the season.