Response to COVID-19
August 10, 2020
I am continuing to preach through Romans 9-11, and encourage you to read Paul’s whole letter. One way to understand Romans is as Paul’s way of working through rejection: rejection by family members who don’t believe Jesus is the Messiah, by Gentile Christians who want to get rid of those who continue to practice Jewish traditions, by Romans who want everyone to worship the emperor to keep stability in the empire, and even by Christian leaders in Jerusalem who wonder if Paul is betraying the new Christian movement. How does Paul deal with these various rejections? How does Paul help us deal with division and rejections today?
(1) We had a congregational meeting yesterday (Aug 9) on BlueJeans. Thank you to all who participated! We said “Thank you” to outgoing council members Rebecca, Mo, Cindy, and Martha and welcomed new council members Diane A., Phil B., Ben F., and Herb S.. We also thanked Dale H., whose term as President ended, but his term on council will continue. Please pray for our leaders as they guide us through this time.
(2) Sunday School kicks off this coming Sunday (Aug 16) at 10am! We will have Sunday School on BlueJeans each Sunday at 10am. If your family is not able to join Sunday School at home, we will be opening classrooms at church to use the internet, one family per classroom. To sign up to use a classroom at church for your family, call or email the church office, 623-931-2451.
(3) We are at Phase 2, which means worship leaders may gather (if they choose) in the sanctuary to lead worship, maintaining 6ft distance and wearing masks. Virginia played the organ live yesterday and the band will play live this coming Sunday. We won’t move to Phase 3 until we have another verifiable 14-day decline in COVID -19 cases. Because there is an 18 day lag in the data, this means we will have to wait a total of 32 days. So, if the decline continues (and that depends on everyone remaining vigilant!) the earliest we might move to Phase 3 would be Sept 13. You can watch the numbers in Maricopa County at:
(4) Thank you for the School Supplies! The Caring Committee thanks everyone who stopped by on Saturday (and earlier) to drop off school supplies. Our neighbors through Sine Elementary and Lutheran Social Service will receive the supplies they need for children to learn. Thanks for loving your neighbors!
Please include in your prayers this week:
A. There is terrible flooding in South Sudan that is affecting many of the families of Emmanuel members (most of them are from a town called Bor in Jonglei state): https://eyeradio.org/floods-displace-nearly-20000-in-jonglei-state/
B.The Liss Family and others in Beirut, Lebanon. The Liss family’s apartment was 2 miles from the explosion at the Beirut Port and their windows were blown out. They are safe, but the protests and violence has increased the risk. Please pray for a peaceful transition of power in Lebanon to a faithful and honest government, and for the safety of all, including the Liss Family!
We have continued opportunities to deepen relationships with God and each other:
A. Worship Sundays 8:30am Traditional and 11am Contemporary now streaming on YouTube and Facebook.
B. Bible Studies on BlueJeans, Monday 6:45pm and Thursday 10am. The Monday night study is on Paul’s letter to Titus; Thursday morning is studying the Gospel according to Mark.
C. Weekday Fellowship at 6:15pm and Prayer Meetings at 6:30pm
Monday through Friday on BlueJeans
D. Food Pantry
The Food Pantry remains open Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9am-12noon and can use whatever canned goods and other non-perishables you can donate. We can especially use protein bars, pasta, and canned vegetables .
Blessed Eleventh week after Pentecost! Come Holy Spirit to grow our faith and guide our lives!