Dear Friends: In the last several days, we have learned that two members of our parish, both fully vaccinated, have tested positive for COVID-19. Both were at church on Sunday, and both are at home experiencing symptoms. People who came in close contact with either of them have been notified. Please pray for our beloved friends who are ill and for everyone who has COVID.
As you know, infection rates in Summit County are soaring. The Georgia Tech COVID-19 Risk Assessment Planning Tool indicates that right now, a gathering of 50 people in Summit County has an 82% chance of having an infected person present. In light of that data, the vestry and I unanimously determined last night that we must move our worship services online until the local situation is less risky. I am heartbroken that this means we will spend our second Christmas online, but I would be far more heartbroken if any of you became ill at church. Since March 2020, we have learned so much about how to be the church on Zoom, and I know that when we gather online this weekend, God will be with us and will bless our efforts to care for the most vulnerable people in our midst. Our Zoom Christmas schedule will be:
December 24, 4 p.m.: Christmas Pageant–Come support our children as they share the gospel story on Zoom from their homes. If you attended the Zoom Christmas pageant last year, you know that this was a highlight of our online Christmas!
December 24, 10:30 p.m.: Zoom Christmas Carol Sing–Led by Peter Wright and Mickey McGroarty
December 24, 11 p.m.: Feast of the Nativity Liturgy of the Word–We will gather on Zoom for a traditional Christmas service with familiar hymns, scriptures, and the Christmas story from the Gospel of Luke.
December 25, 9 a.m.: Christmas in our Pajamas!–This service, which we had always intended to hold on Zoom, will be a short liturgy to celebrate the coming of Jesus into the world.
December 26, 10:30 a.m.: Service of Lessons and Carols–Join us on Zoom this first Sunday after Christmas for a traditional service of scripture readings and Christmas Carols.
After Christmas, we will assess the public health situation in Summit County week-by-week and will update everyone via email and the website about the plan for each Sunday.
In the midst of yet another COVID spike, we continue to give thanks for the scientists and medical experts who have made life-saving vaccines possible, and if you have not yet been fully vaccinated and received your booster shot, I urge you to do so as soon as possible. You can schedule a vaccine online. If you have any questions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church cell phone at 330-607-5905.
Church of Our Saviour is forming circle of people who want to participate in Sacred Ground, a 10-part film-based dialogue on race and faith that is part of the Episcopal Church’s Becoming Beloved Community initiative.
Through readings, videos, and conversations, Sacred Ground invites participants to learn about the history of race and racism in the United States in the context of family stories, economic class, and political and regional identity.
Our Sacred Ground circle will be facilitated by Allison Hauserman, a member of Trinity Cathedral who has significant experience in anti-racism work and Sacred Ground facilitation. Dates and details are pending; if you are interested in learning more, please email Rebecca Wilson and find a list of frequently asked questions on the Episcopal Church website.
On Sunday, November 14 at 4 p.m., the Church of Our Saviour Choir will sing choral evensong.
As our choir director, Peter Wright, says, “Evensong is a service of evening prayer wherein we give thanks to God for the day and for God’s works throughout human history. Readings from the bible and prayers from the many years of the Christian church are interspersed with psalms and canticles to proclaim the wonder of the birth, life, and death of Jesus Christ.”
Consider inviting a friend to this peaceful and contemplative service. Masks will be required and social distance will be observed.
On October 10 at 2 p.m., join us in Church of Our Saviour’s parking lot, half a block east of the church on Crosby Street, to celebrate St. Francis Day with a Blessing of the Animals. Bring your animals for a no-contact blessing (no reptiles, please!) from Mother Debra.
On Sunday, June 13 at 10:30 a.m., we will gather in the green space next to our church building (note the change in venue) to worship together in person for the first time since March 2020. You will be able to enter the green space through the gate on Oakdale next to our building. Please bring lawn chairs if you have them. The service will also be broadcast on Zoom.
After this morning’s service, we will celebrate our recent graduates with a picnic in the courtyard of our church building. Please RSVP for the picnic and sign up to bring a dish to share: RSVP online.
Hello my beloved friends of Church of our Saviour!
I cannot believe that it has already been three years and that my time in seminary is coming to a close. My seminary journey has brought both challenge and joy, especially during this last year as we all navigated life in the midst of a global pandemic. But even in this difficulty, I am grateful for the pockets of joy. Those times that I was able to join you virtually — to see your faces and hear your voices — have given me comfort and sustained me through the difficulty of this last year of my formation.
For the past three years you have prayed for me, supported me, checked in on me, and loved me from afar. As my time in seminary comes to a close, I hope that you will join me in celebrating this milestone by being virtually present for my commencement festivities on May 18th and 19th using the details found below. This will mark the first of many upcoming transitions that I will encounter on my ministry journey. And although these transitions will bring new beginnings in new places, Church of Our Saviour will always be my home. You will always be my people and hold a special place in my heart, regardless of where God calls me to serve. I hope to soon be able to share more details regarding what lies ahead for me, and am looking forward to celebrating these transitions with you when I return to Ohio!
Your fellow servant in Christ,Megan
Seminary of the Southwest Commencement Evening Worship: May 18 at 6:30 pm Eastern/5:30 pm Central Live Stream: ssw.edu/commencement-2021 Seminary of the Southwest Commencement Ceremony: May 19 at 11:00 am Eastern/10:00 am Central Live Stream: ssw.edu/commencement-2021 Ordination and Ministry Registry: If you would like to support me as I prepare to transition into my new role after graduation, feel free to check out these items that will help me continue to grow as a spiritual leader and serve well: https://www.myregistry.com/giftlist/megansordinationandministry
The Akron Area Interfaith Council sponsors the Hunger Walk to benefit the Akron Canton Regional FoodBank. Due to the pandemic, this year’s walk will be virtual again. We benefit enormously as a Partner Agency with the FoodBank. Please consider supporting this activity. Email Anne Schwan with any questions and download a flyer to learn more.