I hope this message finds you healthy, happy, and vaccinated. I wanted to send a note to everyone concerning some Covid19 (Coronavirus) updates, church leadership openings, and our annual meeting.
Recently there has been a spike in the infection rates which has put our surrounding counties in the “Red Zone” for increased spread risk. With this, the worship team has recommended, and I have agreed, that for the safety of everyone that we restart the requirement to wear masks at our in person services. The diocese has also issued a statement recommending this processes to happen at all churches within the diocese, if possible. We will have masks available should you forget to bring one with you.
Are you called to serve as a leader in our church? Our congregation invites you to consider this question. We are seeking faithful leaders to help guide our church as we follow God’s call to “Be the Church and Be the Change.” We seek nominees for the following officers:
Vestry: 2 positions open (3-year term). The vestry position helps in deciding the strategic direction of the church along with furthering our mission statement. We typically meet monthly or online depending on the need.
Deputy: 4 Positions open; 2 alternates This position is for representation of St John’s at the diocesan annual meeting and the alternate is in case a deputy can’t attend. The diocesan annual meeting is a great place to help make a difference through voting of various measures presented.
I would like to call our annual meeting to happen on Sunday August 15th. Our fabulous volunteer and hardworking treasurer, Jeff Davis, has everything together to report on how St. John’s is doing financially. Also our fabulous and hardworking team leaders have a lot to report on what their teams are doing at St. John’s. So we need to gather to elect new leadership and discuss our current and future positions. Typically we have annual meeting during a “potluck Sunday” but as things are changing rapidly with Covid rates in our area this will be somewhat fluid. I will update once we have a definitive agenda planned.
Have a wonderful week and should you have any questions please let me know.
Bishop Mark Van Koevering will be making his annual visitation to St. John’s this Sunday, June 20. This is a traditional aspect of his oversight and role as chief pastor of the diocese. He will be leading the celebration of Holy Communion, preaching, and then available to talk with members of the congregation after the service.
A light lunch will be available for all who are able to join the bishop after the service. As we are still functioning under some of the COVID prevention procedures, it will NOT be a potluck. The current plan is to have some sub trays from Subway.
Sunday, May 23, is Pentecost Sunday. This major celebration of the church, which occurs fifty days after Easter (hence the “pente-” in pentecost!) commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the followers of Christ (Acts 2), empowering them to go out and preach the Gospel of the Resurrection of Christ to the ends of the earth.
This Sunday will be a celebration of Holy Eucharist (Communion) outside under the canopies at 11:00 am.
All are encouraged to wear red, which is the liturgical color for this celebration, as a reminder of the tongues as of flame (Acts 2:3) which appeared and hovered above the heads of Jesus’ followers.
Everyone is also invited to bring a picnic/sack lunch for after the service. While we cannot yet return to a buffet-style potluck, we can still gather and celebrate individual and family meals as a church community.
This Sunday, May 16, morning prayer will be offered in-person and by Zoom video stream at 11:00 am. The service will be recorded and posted later in the day to Facebook.
Although the CDC has modified masking guidelines, the state of Kentucky still maintains a masking mandate. Additionally, masks are still mandated by the diocesan guidelines and our current local church guidelines. Even if the state were to relax masking guidance, we are still obligated to follow the instructions issued by Bishop Van Koevering. If and when Bishop Van Koevering issues revised guidance we at St. John’s will then re-evaluate our local COVID protection protocols.
Although we are making in-person worship available, every effort will be made also to make worship available by Zoom and by a posting later to Facebook of a recording of the worship service. This applies both to Sunday morning worship and Wednesday evenings.
This last weekend’s attempt to stream live to Facebook did not demonstrate satisfactory audio quality in either Facebook or Zoom, and for that I, Bruce, am sorry. For adequate audio at the moment, it is necessary to stream from a cell phone, but the cell phone Zoom application is not capable of streaming directly to Facebook. Please be patient as we experiment with ways to make worship opportunities available to everyone whether in person or at home.
This Sunday, April 11, the Morning Prayer service will be offered in-person outside. We will be gathering under the canopies again, but we will use the folding chairs from inside the church hall.
We will make the service available through the regular Zoom link available on the St. John’s website. However, we will not be making the service available on the Facebook feed. We plan to use music at the service and want to observe appropriate copyright restrictions on the music.
The Good Friday service will be live-streamed by Zoom and also on the Facebook page at 6:00 pm this evening. The link to the live-stream is available on the St. John’s webpage at HTTP://www.stjohnscorbin.org . The following is a direct link to the Zoom room: https://zoom.us/j/118956276
The people of Estill, Lee, and Perry counties have been blessed by the financial outpouring of our faith communities throughout the Diocese of Lexington. Already several thousand dollars of cleaning supplies have been purchased and distributed, $1,500 donated by St. Raphael’s. We have also received significant donations from the Church of the Good Shepherd, the Diocesan ECW, and even the Newport Professional Firefighters, not to mention many of our other faith communities and individuals. By the end the month, $10,000 worth of $100 gift cards will have been purchased and distributed within these three counties, $5,000 of which will be provided by the U.S. Disaster program of Episcopal Relief and Development. Soon to follow will be more cleaning supplies and building materials for repairing damaged homes. We are working through local officials to ensure that what you have donated will go to those truly in need. St. Timothy’s has been able to provide pillows and bedding normally used for mission trips and the quilters guild of the Church of the Good Shepherd has donated several beautiful quilts for the people of Lee County. What is absolutely NOT needed is clothing. While individual items are welcome, please realize that when purchased in bulk, better prices can often be gotten and there is less labor for those having to sort and disburse aid.
Recovery from disasters is a lengthy process which can in some cases take years. If you have been watching the news, you have probably seen the many churches and organizations who have come into these communities to help. Unlike some coming into the areas who have trailers proudly showing their names, many others come in quietly for a day or two, cleaning up and repairing what they can, and return to their homes unsung. While carpentry skills are helpful, any type of assistance can be used. When the tornados outbreak struck southeastern Kentucky back in 2012, a group of high school students, who had scheduled a visit months before at St. Timothy’s, arrived two days after the storms. A few of those teens might have helped a relative do a little renovation or repairs around their homes, but only a few. Monday found them in Salyersville demolishing what was left of a food and clothing pantry of the Catholic church and Thursday they were in West Liberty installing drywall in a warehouse being turned into the elementary school. The rest of the week they were replacing a roof. All were greatly needed and despite their inexperience they made a huge difference. While it may not have been giving food to the hungry, it was building walls for those children needing an education, it may not have been filling the stomachs of those who were empty, it was closing the hole in the roof. If you think you might be able to help our neighbors, regardless of ability or the day of the week you can help, please contact Bryant Kibler, firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will find a way we can put you to work inside our own diocese where we can be the church, be the change.