“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35
One of the things that I absolutely love about First Presbyterian Church is the way we show our love and support for one another. We are quick to offer an encouraging word, send an uplifting text, or prepare meals when others are going through hard times. The love and support are genuine. The way we often feel them most is when we gather.
But right now, during this pandemic, we cannot gather so it looks different and it takes more effort.
The membership ministry has been talking about how to build community and offer support during this time when it is unsafe to gather in large groups. We were not able to gather at the park for Rally Day. We cannot come together for a big meal at church. We cannot host a lingering right now, either. So many of the ways we typically build community are just not possible during these times of social distancing. So, what are we to do?
One thing the membership ministry and some other session members are doing is making phone calls and/or sending cards, especially to those who are more at risk and thus more isolated. Another thing we want to do is encourage each one of you to contact someone. You can call to say hello or drop a card in the mail. You can call to invite someone to join you online or in person at one of the many fall offerings. Our goal is for each one in our congregation to know that the people of FPC care.
The love of the people of FPC is so core to our very essence as a church that you are already reaching out in many ways. For instance, the prayer shawl ministry continues. Some house churches have had zoom meetings. Some of you are participating in Presbyterian Women’s circles. What else can each of us do to make sure each person feels the love of God and FPC during this pandemic? I’d love to hear your ideas. How are you showing someone you care?
The love the people of FPC show each other is very special. Certainly, it is a mark of our discipleship. It is a joy to be one of your pastors.