A few weeks ago, I was optimistic that so many of us are getting vaccinated, and therefore we could start meeting in person again for worship services. We gave a survey to the congregation, and indeed it shows that almost everyone who is a regular part of the congregation is vaccinated (at least the 66 people who filled out the survey).
That’s the good news. The bad news is that Michigan is still considered one of the highest-risk places for the virus; and the truth is that being vaccinated doesn’t mean 100% immunity. The CDC still recommends that vaccinated people shouldn’t gather in crowded spaces indoors. Therefore we (the coronavirus task force and myself) aren’t recommending gathering in person for worship yet. Maybe the steps back toward being together again are small groups, individual meetings, and outdoor gatherings. We need to keep thinking creatively, keep being safe, and find ways to meet our need for community. The survey of the congregation also showed an even split among three groups: those who are mostly ready and eager to start meeting in person again; those who are unsure; and those who are mostly hesitant to start meeting in person again. This is complicated for all of us, and we’ll keep moving forward one step at a time holding the complexity of it as best we can.
Father-Mother God, hear this prayer: may we emerge from the isolation of this pandemic with cautious joy. May we embrace the miraculous science of these highly-effective vaccines…and may we honor their limitations.
May we embrace the joy of seeing loved ones after an absence of long months. May we take safe steps towards reuniting with the people in this faith community whom we have not seen for long.
May all of us be true to our values of love and caring as we navigate the still uncertain world of re-opening and re-connecting. May love hold all of us as we do so.
Amen. Blessed be.
Rev. Andrew Frantz