On Saturday, June 13 we are resuming in-person worship at our normal worship times: Saturdays at 6:30 pm, Sundays at 8, 9:20, and 10:45 am, and Wednesdays at 6 pm (starting Wednesday, June 17).
Starting on Saturday, June 13, you are welcome to join us in the sanctuary at any of these times. You do not need to sign up for worship.
Slight modifications will continue: we will continue to wear masks as we enter the building until we are settled in our pews; we will continue to offer modified seating arrangements and hand sanitizer; and we will continue with slightly modified communion. Details on these modifications are below.
We will also continue to post our weekly worship services online, for those who are not ready or not able to attend in person yet.
There will be no in-person Sunday Connections class at the church for the remainder of the summer.
Modifications for Worship for June 2020 and following until further notice:
May grace and peace be multiplied to you! (1 Peter 1:2) It has been a blessing to continue worshiping together, albeit in new and challenging ways. As a reminder, all services are available online at http://mtolivelutheran.com/ and by phone (815-216-4480), with additional bible study options available Sundays on Zoom and during the week on Youtube (details here). Though these online worship options will continue, we are excited to announce that we are moving towards in person worship again! Modified in-person worship will resume on Saturday, June 6 at Mt Olive and Concordia Lutheran churches. With prayer and discretion, taking in consideration both our spiritual need for corporate worship and our need to adhere to the Bible’s instructions to honor our worldly authorities (Romans 13), our congregations will be moving forward with the following procedures for in person worship:
We will also take precautions so that we can worship freely with mitigated risk of spreading germs. We won’t use the hymnals so that people are not handling them and potentially passing on the virus that way. The pews will be wiped down after each service with Clorox wipes. Hand sanitizer will available as people come and go from worship. At least six feet of distance will be maintained between households. Be sure to wave hello to each other! We also ask that if you are sick or have symptoms that you not come until you are well.
We understand that this season carries unique stresses and anxieties, especially as disrupts our routines for joining together as a church community. Some people greatly desire to worship in person together with others, perhaps especially those who live alone. Some people will not yet feel comfortable coming together to worship in person and will continue to need to worship online or by phone. We encourage you to use your prayer and discernment on what your worship will look like during this time, and always remember that your pastors are here for you no matter which worship option you pursue. Different people will have different ideas about how to do things in these unprecedented times. We as a congregation want to put the best construction on what others do, as the 8th commandment tells us to do. We not condemn others who with their sanctified judgment come to a different conclusion than we do. So if someone chooses to worship at home we will not condemn their decision. If someone chooses to worship at church we will not condemn their decision.
I rejoiced with those who said to me “let’s go to the house of the Lord” (Psalm 122). While some will come back to church sooner than others, how we’ll rejoice when we are all able to come again to worship together. In the meantime the most important thing is to worship. Please invite others to worship, too. Worship is essential, wherever it happens!
Until you are ready or able to sign up for an in-person worship time, you can continue to join together in online worship at http://mtolivelutheran.com/covid-19 or by phone at (815-216-4480) for those who cannot access the online worship. We will also include each week’s online sign up on the church website. If you have questions about worship, you may reach out to the pastors, who pray for you without ceasing!