Even though most of you have not yet returned to our physical sanctuary, there are SO MANY big and great things going on here right now that I don't know where to begin: VBS, Youth Mission Trip, Town Halls, Updated Website, Congregational Meeting, Playground Planning, building updates... but let me aknowledge first that even good change is change, and change can be hard.
Church, you have done amazing and hard things with such grace the last 14 months while we have been physically apart. Now we are doing the hard work to come back together, but we are not the same people we were before. We may go back to our sanctuary, but there is, dearly beloved, no going back to before.
When you come back, worship is going to look different. There will be cameras, screens and digital bulletins. For the time being, to foster social distancing, and especially while are children are not vaccinated, we will be using chairs. We won't be singing together just yet. Plates will not be passed around.
So we ask you to arrive at worship in July early, filled with grace, and with an open mind, knowing that everything we are doing is in the great prayerful effort to balance your comfort and safety. Also keep in mind that our worship practices will continue to change and evolve with time, the guidance of the CDC, and with the vaccination availabillity to all ages.
We also want you to know that if you choose to continue to worship with us online, you are not a second-class church member. We are doing everything we can to fully include you in our worship services. On Sunday mornings, simply go to uccaustin.org/live to view our worship service on our website, or click the buttons to view our services on Facebook or Youtube where you can interact in the comment box. You do not need a Facebook account or a Youtube account to view our public livestream on either one of those platforms. Thank you for your understanding that we unfortunatley will no longer be able to also manage a zoom room on top of our livestream platforms and in-service technology.
For all the information about our coming back together plan, please go to uccaustin.org/indoorworship.
I hope to see you at our town hall Sunday after worship and our Congregational Meeting next Sunday, and on July 4th, either in-person or online.