Pastor’s Musings

Executive Orders and Worship

Dear church family,

The rollout of Executive Order 2020-160 was confusing and surprising. Initially, news reports seemed to suggest that the order was designed to tighten restrictions in the Upper Peninusla, while simultaneously relaxing some restrictions for Detroit casinos. Further reflection shows that this order was actually a statewide tightening of restrictions on social gatherings. According to the EO, indoor social gatherings are capped at ten people; outdoor gatherings are capped at 100 people in our region. Also, the public is not permitted to enter performance venues, exercise studios, and the like. Obviously, a strict application of the indoor rule would make worship services impossible. EO 2020-160 does, however, provide an exemption for services of religious worship. In addition to this adjustment, a different EO places greater scrutiny on workplace safety for all workers who cannot work remotely. In light of these orders, I want to share a few things with you.

  1. In-person worship will continue for the foreseeable future. There are members of our congregation who have chosen to shelter-in-place since the beginning of the pandemic. There are other members of our congregation who should very seriously consider curtailing social activities. The position of FPC leadership is clear here: if you stay home, we support you and Jesus loves you.
  2. Online worship resources will continue to be posted. Sermons, prayers, and music are added to the Lord’s Day Worship page every Sunday. A new monthly devotional guide is available, including a companion video released on Thursday mornings. Zoom Bible study happens every Wednesday evening at 6:30. Radio broadcasts on WCSR play at 7:30 AM every Sunday morning, and they are set to reflect what is happening in corporate worship that day. People who love and care for you are a phone call away.
  3. Some modifactions to our normal Sunday will be reintroduced. We will continue to operate without ushers or greeters. There will be no food served after service. Adult Sunday school will happen in the fellowship hall to encourage spreading out. Choir will not be able to operate normally as long as the conditions persist.
  4. Mask-wearing is strongly encouraged. No mandate. No guilt. Please consider wearing a mask when you are moving around the building.
  5. The church office will shift to a 9-1 schedule. Irma will be able to do some aspects of her job remotely. Otherwise, the schedule shift is designed to mitigate risk. Just remember the change in the coming weeks. If you visit, please remember your mask.

Sorry for the long read, but I thought clarity would be helpful. Remember to care for your soul through fellowship, study, and prayer. Pray for revival. Seek God with passion. Honor God first and then honor governing authorities as much as you are able. Love your neighbor. I’ll see you soon!

Pastor Scott