ST. PAUL COVID-19 UPDATE

Dear Friends,

As you know from yesterday’s FYI, we have been considering the best ways we can be church in this time of pandemic. We wanted to respond thoughtfully and prayerfully, in a spirit of peace, not of panic. Early this week, after the Council meeting, we formed a small preparedness team to advise the Council.

Today, we decided to postpone physical gatherings including Sunday worship for at least the next two Sundays, March 15th and March 22nd. We made this decision after much deliberation and consultation.  We all feel the sadness of this decision, but we feel it is the wisest and most compassionate decision based on what we know.  We plan to experiment with various forms of virtual church. This Sunday, we will broadcast a Facebook Live service at 10:00 a.m. Theodore Stoddard and I will be testing this out. We look forward to seeing what will happen.

We know that not all of you are on Facebook, so we will be trying other online platforms next week. We will keep you posted.  Virtual church has been around for several years, and I’m excited that we are going to try this way of being church, even as I mourn the loss of our physical gatherings for worship.

I will be updating you on other activities during these two weeks; for now, all our regular gatherings are postponed.  We ask for your patience and your help, should you have ideas as we go forward. I will work on virtual bible study and weekly devotions. Robin Carlo is working on virtual Sunday School, and expects to broadcast Facebook Live Sunday School at 9:15 a.m. this Sunday, March 15th.

The Council and I ask that you please keep in touch with each other, and with those who might be in need. We hope to create a phone tree, and you all know that you can call or write me. I will be checking in with you as much as possible by phone or email.

Lent offers us a time to embrace simplicity. This year, that simplicity is imposed upon us by events and circumstances out of our control. We can, however, choose our response. One of my friends wrote that compassion is our seat-belt in troubled times. I agree. In all that we are doing in these days of social distancing, my prayer is we remain interconnected as much as possible. May we remember those who may need assistance. May we know God’s presence in the midst of us.

In Christ,

Pastor Anne Deneen

Christmas Services

Our schedule of Christmas Services.

Wednesday, December 18th at 7:30 p.m. Join us for WinterSong; an Advent Celtic Meditation. Folksinger Michael O’Leary and harpist Carole McIntyre will be at St. Paul for another beautiful evening of Celtic music, poetry, song and prayer to honor the turning of the year and this season of waiting and renewal.  Donations welcomed and appreciated.

On Sunday, December 22nd at our 10:00 a.m. service, we will have our Instant Christmas Pageant presented by the Sunday School and the Congregation. This is a lot of fun. Please join us.

Our Christmas Eve Service will be held on Tuesday, December 24th at 7:00 p.m.

The Christmas Morning service will be held at 8:00 a.m.

Everyone is always welcomed here at St. Paul Lutheran Church. Please join us. If you cannot be here with us, Merry Christmas and the Peace of the Lord be with you.

SHARE THE MUSIC – A SALUTE TO OUR VETERANS

Please join us at St. Paul Lutheran Church on Monday, November 11th at 2:00 PM for this musical tribute.  Admission is free but donations will be welcomed and appreciated.  They will go to the organization called Company2Heroes, a unique service dog training program specializing in guided/assisted self-training of service dogs working with combat veterans from all wars who are suffering and have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress, Military Sexual Trauma and/or Traumatic Brain Injury.           

Sibelius at the Piano

Cape Ann Finns and St. Paul Lutheran Church are excited to announce a piano performance by Ruusamari Teppo, the great-great-granddaughter of the world-famous composer, Jean Sibelius.  Ms. Teppo, who is pursuing doctoral studies in the USA, plays internationally.  Recently, she played at the 2019 FinFest.  The concert will be held at St. Paul Lutheran Church on Sunday, October 13th, 2019 at 4:00 PM.  Suggested donation is $20 per person for this wonderful opportunity.

June 1, 2019 – St. Paul Lutheran Church Annual Plant Sale

June 1, 2019 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM – Rain or Shine

1123 Washington St, Gloucester, MA 01930, USA

Check out plants and seedlings from the gardens of church member and neighbors! Also, Nisü (Finnish coffee bread), garden tools, books, activities for the kids and more! Come have fun and check out our hardy New England plants.

It’s also not too late to be a part of our Compost fundraiser: you buy the compost (non-synthetic-chemical plant food) at the regularly priced retail price of $10 and St. Paul keeps the retail portion, which is $5.00, a bit like we are a store. Thanks for Black Earth Compost for offering this fundraiser and their good work.

If you would like to place an order, please contact Anne Wheeler at office@stpaulcapeann.org or at 978-283-6550.

Whether you are a seasoned gardener or not, we have something for you. Hope to see you there!