Letter sent out to the congregation on
March 13, 2020
St. John’s Lutheran Church
518 Franklin Ave
Essex, Maryland 21221
March 13, 2020
Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
We are canceling all church activities at St. John's Lutheran Church like WELCA Bible study, and Women’s Lunch also including Sunday/Wednesday/Praise Hour worship services, effective immediately.
On Thursday, March 12th the Executive Committee determined that if the Baltimore County school system will be off for the next two weeks (until Mon, March 23rd) that the congregation would cancel all gatherings for as long as such a ban remains in place. We will be reevaluating daily and will let you know if anything changes.
We are all stewards, not just of our health, but of the health of every one of our sisters and brothers. As the Apostle Paul said to his congregation in 1st Corinthians "For we are God's servants, working together; you are God's field, God's building." That means that we need to take care of each other at this time. This will be at least for the next two weeks.
So, pray for one another. Give each other a call on the phone or use Facetime or Skype to wave through a computer. Use the technology that we have to be a church family, even though we are a distance apart. We are connected to each other in prayer and communion.
Pastor Charlene and Mike Gosnell will be working to put as much worship material as they can up on Facebook and YouTube. We will send out links to those for the people who have access to them.
We will send out what the weekly readings are and the hymns that we selected, so that even if you do not have internet access, you will be able to read, pray and sing as part of our church family.
And as a church family, we depend on each other. Your weekly offering helps support the church and there are bills that still need to be paid monthly. Please keep up with your giving by dropping it by the church because Pastor Charlene will be there most days, but please call ahead! Or just keep the offering until we are back together again.
We need to take care of each other – by keeping social distance, by praying for each other, by keeping in contact over technology. We also ask that you be a steward of your resources: please don't push yourself too hard emotionally, physically, or financially.
If you have any needs during this time, please contact Pastor Charlene (via phone 240-818-9393 or email as well). Let us keep the lines of communication open. Know that we are praying for you, for all the health care workers across the world, for scientists trying to find treatments, for leaders trying to care for their people, for everyone trying their best to take care of each other.
You belong to God. Wash your hands, stay safe, pray for one another because we are praying for you.
Peace in Christ,
Executive Council Committee
Members: Chris Miles, Karen Leventis, Scott Tennyson, Sharon Greason and Pastor Charlene Barnes.
We included Mike Gosnell because this concerned worship services.