Easter and partial reopening
March 18, 2021
Dear Saints of Trinity,
There is much to share this week. Probably the most important thing is information about reopening. We are reopening, but doing it gradually. We have permission to allow 25 persons in the facility at any given time, including worship services. As limiting as that may seem, at least it allows us to take one step toward fully opening up. Here’s how it’s going to work.
We will be reopening for live worship during Holy Week. We need to take reservations for those services. It will be first come first served. Reservations can be made by calling the church office. There will be four live Holy Week services available. There will also be opportunities to view those services on-line, including Easter Sunday. We will be prerecording an Easter service on the Wednesday before Easter. That service will be available for viewing online on Easter Sunday from the comfort of your homes. We thought that was important for those who will be unable to attend a live service, particularly given the minimal amount of people we will be able to have in each service.
Regarding the live services, each will require a reservation. We are asking that you make only one reservation. In other words, choose one of the four services to attend live. Here are the options. We will be holding a live Maundy Thursday service; the service that helps us remember the Last Supper. That service will be at 5 pm on Thursday, April 1, in the sanctuary. It will be recorded and available on-line the next day for those unable to attend the live service. There will be a live Good Friday service; a service remembering the death of Jesus, and all of the elements that led him toward the cross. That service will be on Friday, April 2nd at 5 pm, will also be taped, and will be available on-line the following day for those unable to attend. Each of those services will have 25 spots available.
On Easter Sunday we will hold two live services. The first will be at 9 am with the second at 11 am. With appropriate reservations, we will welcome 25 people to the sanctuary in each Easter Sunday service. We will also offer another 25 the opportunity to be in the Fellowship hall for each of the two services. The sanctuary service will be live, while the service in the Fellowship Hall will be simulcast on the big screen television monitors. The 9 am service will also be taped for viewing on-line at a later date. Those are the four opportunities for live worship beginning Holy Week. Now here are the tougher pieces of reopening in this way.
First, we are asking that only those who consider Trinity their church home make reservations, and attend the live services. In other words, no extended family, no neighbors, no other friends, at least at this point. I know that sounds harsh, but it’s what we need to do. We will open more fully as time goes by, and vaccinations become more prevalent. In addition, we are requiring that only those who have completed both vaccination shots, and who have had the two-week, post-second shot waiting period completed. So, the second shot plus the two-week waiting period will be required in order for anyone to attend one of the live services. In addition, we’re asking that we are able to have a copy of your vaccination card on file at the church. When bringing your card to the church, please redact or blackout your birthday before submitting your copied card. You can either drop the copy by the church office or bring it with you when you attend one of the services.
Upon arrival at the church for the service you will be attending, and for which you have a reservation, you will be met at the door by a greeter. The greeter will take your temperature, ask you to sign in, ask that you sanitize your hands, and make sure you have a mask that covers your nose and mouth. Those elements are requirements for any and all who attend. Masks will be worn at all times while in the facility. Once those pieces are taken care of, an usher will then take you to a seat in the sanctuary. The seating is designed with social distancing in mind. Every person in attendance will be socially distanced from anyone not in their “bubble.” We’re asking that you not sing, or at least don’t sing out. There will be no meet and greet time during the service. Once the service is over, ushers will dismiss you by sections in order to assure that social distancing is followed. There will also be no coffee hour.
Friends, words cannot describe to you how difficult all of this has been for those of us trying to plan worship. Our hands are tied by both the Governor and our Bishop. It’s possible that between now and Holy Week we will be allowed to expand those “in attendance” numbers. There is no guarantee of that. At this point, it is 25. It could move to 50 individuals or even 25% occupancy. We just don’t know. Our fear is people feeling excluded, and that people will feel an even deeper level of isolation knowing that others have been in worship in the sanctuary. Neighbors, please make those important phone calls to make sure everyone is okay. And be assured that as the virus becomes more controlled, as more are vaccinated, as we continue to follow the proper protocols we will be able to welcome more and more people back into worship. Until then, everything we’re doing is being done out of love for you. We love you and we want to keep you safe. The pandemic is not over.
Finally, I need to say this. The pandemic is real. The pandemic is huge. The numbers are real. The need for masks is real. As your pastor I want to caution you on listening to the voices that may tell you otherwise. I’ve had friends die. I have friends who, even after almost a year, are still struggling to breathe. I have friends who have not regained full strength or full health after months of struggle with this virus. It is real, as is the science behind the protocols. I believe that with all of my heart. So let’s love each other and keep each other as safe as we possibly can. I can finally honestly say, at least in a small way, “See you in church.”
Some Concerns that we have:
- For those who continue to go through physical struggles, those who are dealing with cancer, or other health situations.
- Prayers for those who are emotionally feeling lost and alone.
- For all those who are ill from the covid-19 virus; for those families who have lost loved ones to the virus; for all the first responders/essential workers; and for those who are nervous about getting shots.
- For peace in our country.
- For smooth delivery of the vaccine. And please pray for all of the volunteers.
- For Katherine Parker, missionary to Nepal.
Parking Lot service is taking a break for winter
We thank you for your continued support of our ministries here at Trinity and ask that you mail your contributions to the church. Make sure to use our Post Office Box 3697 instead of our street address.
Announcements for March 18 – 25
Birthdays this week: Even though you can’t be with those having birthdays this week, emails or phone calls are appreciated.
Easter Drive-through Dessert
Sunday, April 4 is Easter! As a thank you gift to our congregation, a small group of church ladies is planning to bake an Easter dessert to be distributed via a “drive-through” on Easter Sunday. Each household can choose either a small loaf of Chocolate Zucchini Bread or a small loaf of Lemon Poppy Seed Bread.
To RSVP contact Jan Kreidler at 360-681-5027 or firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Thursday, March 25th. Notes: 1) Safe procedures (wearing masks and gloves) will be followed. 2) The “drive-through” time has not yet been determined so watch upcoming announcements for that information.
Spring arrives this month and our annual plant sale on Saturday, May 8 will be here soon! A few things you can do to get your plants ready to donate are dig, divide and pot your outdoor and indoor plants for the sale. For more information, contact Barbara Parse, 360-683-2113, email@example.com
Trustees/Trinity TLC Gathering
The Trustees invite you to serve in a very tangible way, a bi-weekly gathering called Trinity TLC to accomplish light maintenance around the Church while sharing in fellowship. We meet every two weeks on Friday at 9:30 AM for a couple of hours of cutting grass, doing small maintenance chores, and a host of small jobs that together make a big difference … providing TLC to our building and grounds. We will offer coffee and light eats to make this a social time as well, providing TLC to ourselves! The inaugural Trinity TLC will be Friday 19 March at 9:30 AM. Jobs this week include lawn mowing, spraying moss in the parking lot, testing emergency lights, cleaning the kitchen refrigerator coils and range hoods, and various small repairs, mostly inside. All are welcome!
Save the date for a Bible study
“Renewed: Finding Hope When You Don’t Like Your Story” by Heather M. Dixon. This class will meet in-person on Mondays at 3 p.m. and Zoom on Tuesdays from 1:00-2:00 p.m. for 4 weeks starting April 6 and ending April 27, 2021.
In this four-week Bible study, we’ll explore the life of Naomi as told in the Book of Ruth. We will learn to flourish as we live out our hard stories and trust that God can transform them. We’ll trade our heartache for delight as we discover a God who rescues and redeems. For more information and to sign up for this class, contact Kathleen Charters by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 240.463.7598.
Check out the education page on our website
It has been recently updated. Sermon discussion questions can be found on this page.
Trinity UMC continues to amaze! A total of $1,125 recently was donated to the UMCOR Disaster Relief Fund. Many thanks to the donors!
A Celebration of Life for Dorothy Shreffler
— to be held online: Next Tuesday, March 23rd, 5:00 pm Pacific Daylight Time. All event information is available on the GatheringUs memorial webpage for Dorothy Shreffler:
Update on Sequim Food Bank Distribution:
The upcoming food distribution dates through June are: March 24, April 28, May 26, and June23. Hours for the volunteers are 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. If you would like to help with the food distributions, contact Jan Kreidler (360-681-5027 or email@example.com).
Access to the Church during the COVID-19 Vaccinations
Blake Ave is now open, but as you approach the church, you will be stopped by a Volunteer Police person. Simply let them know you are trying to get to the church for a meeting, they will wave you on by. Turn into the north entrance, drive by the skate park, and then go around the back of the church building. There will be parking available. This is on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays before 9 am and until 2 pm.
COVID-19 Vaccinations for Clallam County residents
Those now eligible are:
- Teachers and other school and childcare staff. A new online registration question will ask whether you work for a school, a school district, or a childcare center. Please bring your School ID with you to the vaccination event. (Any age over 18 years old.)
- Essential workers – including agriculture, food processing, grocery stores, food banks, public transit, corrections and courts. (Any age over 18 years old.)
- Those 50 or older and their spouse or domestic partner in the car – may be younger and can be registered at the same time.
Registration will be in one-hour time blocks between 8 am and 1 p.m. each day. Once online registration is complete, a ticket with the date and time should be printed and brought with you. Each person/couple in a vehicle must have a registration ticket.
This is a drive-through process. People stay in their cars. Check-in is here at TUMC in the parking lot. After completing the paperwork, people are directed to Carrie Blake Park where they will receive their vaccination. You may register online at http://vaccine.clallam.net/register or call 360-681-3447. More information is at jamestownhealth.org.
Church Attendance Requirements include vaccinations
Please note that when TUMC opens for on-site worship it will be a requirement to have your two vaccinations and be past the two weeks following your second vaccination.
Peninsula Singers Virtual Cabaret
— is still up for viewing. Because of COVID-19, the choir cannot meet to sing or perform, and we need some basic donations in order to keep alive until the restrictions are lifted, and people are allowed to sing and perform again, as well as award some scholarships. The show is hosted by Jerry Wright and runs for just under 45 minutes. It is very good, and can be accessed from the Peninsula Singers website: peninsulasingers.org or on Facebook: Peninsula Singers | Facebook. Donations by mail can be sent to: Peninsula Singers, 325 E. Washington Street # 135, Sequim, WA 98382. God bless you for helping us weather the Covid storm!
Trinity United Methodist Church office hours are 9 am-2 pm Monday through Friday. However, due to limited access to the building during this phase of opening, we are keeping the doors locked. There is a doorbell to the right of the main door (by the office) that you need to ring to alert the office and you will be let in. It is best to call ahead so we are aware that you are coming. Thanks so much for your patience and remember when in the building to be sure and wear your mask!