March 14, 2020
Last Sunday seems like a lifetime ago, doesn’t it? This is a note to explain some further steps we are taking at Epiphany as we all continue to learn and adapt to the COVID-19 virus and the risks that come with it.
Worship this Sunday at 8 and 10:15am: This will be a week-to-week decision, but after looking over current information, we will be gathering for worship tomorrow. If you are in one of the CDC’s identified risk categories or are not feeling well yourself, please hear me, just because the doors will be open at Epiphany does not mean that you “ought to be at church.” We love you and want you to act with prudence. Our livestream also allows you to join us virtually (see below).
No nursery, Sunday School, or Coffee Hour: Following the clear advice of our bishop, we will be pausing these Sunday activities for the present. Children are still welcome, of course.
Livestream: This is likely the best way for most of us to worship together during this time. To access the livestream, simply go to www.epiphanyanglican.net at 10:15am and follow the link at the center of the homepage. If tuning into the Livestream is something you have not done before and you would like some coaching, Bob Beckley (703-307-8741) and Ralph Morris (703-631-1687) would be happy to guide you. Just give them a call.
Small Groups: We may have more to say about this in the near future, but in this moment, let me simply encourage all small group members to stay in contact with each other and help each other whether or not your group is continuing to physically meet.
Other Needs: The church office will be open next week (with a different staff member physically present at the church each day). Please feel free to contact us as you would in any other time. Clergy will be available to provide pastoral care as needed. Our benevolence ministry is on call if you find yourself needing assistance.
Prayer Requests: We will continue to pray for each other. An easy way to let us know how best to do that is through our website’s prayer request page.
Now, a word about how we are making decisions at Epiphany during this time. First, we will continue to listen to our local, state and national authorities (Titus 3.1). We will also listen to our bishop (1 Thess. 5.24-26). Finally, I continue to believe that while this is a season when both overreactions and under-reactions are possible (and each a risk in its own way), our job as a church is to say our prayers and move forward both with human prudence and also great trust in God.
For me, I have been touched this week by a little verse from Romans 12. It’s just a few words, but speaks to this moment. “ Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer” (Romans 12.12). May that be Epiphany during this season.
The Rev. Peter Frank