Thanks to Margaret Beattie for hanging the Thanksgiving banner (just barely visible at left – I turned on all the lights but it was still dark in the church!)
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to make it very difficult to plan ahead, and (as I hinted in my sermon on Sunday) requires us to be flexible and ready to change our plans on little notice.
The 28-day partial lockdown on the island of Montreal is due to end on Oct. 28, but I don’t think anyone would be surprised if the “red alert” were extended beyond that date. When the Corporation met on Wednesday, October 14, we decided that as long as the red alert continues, we will continue the current status quo of worship on Zoom only, broadcasting from the church with a small team.
If and when the alert level is lowered, we plan to resume in-person worship with whatever the existing restrictions are. Currently, the Diocese is still allowing gatherings of 25 or fewer people, including Eucharist. When we resume worship in person, we plan to take one week of Morning Prayer just to make sure everything is up to speed and under control, and then return to sharing Holy Communion the following week. This will give us time, among other things, to have a “dry run” of the procedure for Eucharist, the same way we did with the tech set-up in the sanctuary when we first used it to broadcast worship.
This means that the absolute earliest that we might have Eucharist is November 8, and of course it could be considerably longer than that.
A big thanks to the 50+ people who have responded to the survey asking about additional worship times! Just to be clear, the 10 am service will not go away under any circumstances that I can anticipate – we just want to make sure that once we are back in-person, we create enough opportunities for everyone who wants to receive communion, to do so, and if we’re still limited to 25 people per service, that may require adding additional services. And it occurred to us that despite the long tradition of worship at 8 and 10 am, there might actually be other options that worked better!
Regardless of whether we are worshiping in person or not on All Saints’ Sunday, we are currently collecting names of our departed loved ones to be read in the service, so please submit those to Jennifer if you wish them to be included.
Planning is underway for a video Christmas Pageant and for online Lessons & Carols service. If you wish to participate in either one, please get in touch with me or Chris. And we’ve been given tentative permission to plan some outdoor caroling events – appropriately masked and distanced – so we have the chance to sing beloved Christmas music together!
Thank you all, so much, for your flexibility, cheerfulness, and patience!