March 16, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

The Executive Committee met again this morning.  We will continue to meet at least once every two weeks.   Below is an update, dated 3/16/2020.  It does include some information from the very first update.

1)  We have suspended face to face, in-sanctuary worship for the present time.  We will update you when we are ready to gather in person in again in our sanctuary.  Until then, we will only offer worship services online.

2)  We will go Facebook Live at 10:30 a.m.  every Sunday, on our Facebook page, to share our brief worship service. Here are instructions on how to connect to the service for those who do AND those who do NOT have a Facebook account.

  1. For those who DO have a Facebook account: Go online, go to facebook.com, and login to your Facebook account.  Do a page search for Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, Coatesville, PA.  Click on the link to our page, and scroll down to the posts.

For those who do NOT have a Facebook account, you do NOT need one.

  • Go online, and go to facebook.com/luthgoodshep .
  • Wait for the Pop Up Box that ask you to login or create an account (ignore the login at the bottom of the screen).
  • At the bottom of the Pop Up box, there should be a spot that says “Not Now” (it may be in smaller typeface). Click on “Not Now”.
  • You should be able to see the Facebook page for Good Shepherd. Scroll down to the posts.  When we begin Live Streaming you will see an active video of worship.
  • Turn the volume up on the sound on your device.

3)  We hope to send an email out near the end of each week that will contain an attachment of our worship service.  We invite you to print out the bulletin and follow along with the worship service.

4)   We have cancelled ALL church activities, including, but not limited to Confirmation Classes, First Communion Classes, Council Meeting, Lenten Mid-Week Suppers and Vespers, Scouts, Choir rehearsals, and the Community Yard Sale & Breakfast, and Bible Studies.   When we are ready to resume activities, we will send you an update.

5)  We do still plan to distribute the boxes of Easter meals.  If you have signed up to donate food items, a large bin with a lid will be located at the entrance of the church.  You can place your non perishable items in the bin (please put the lid back on), or drop off your donations during regular business hours, M – TH, 9-1pm.  Sign up sheets are located in the Narthex if you would still like to stop in and signup for the remaining items.  Items must be returned no later than Wednesday, April 1st.  Meal pick up is scheduled for Sunday, April 5th from 1 – 2:30 pm in the hall.

6) We are also cancelling all Fellowship Hall rentals for March and April, possibly May.  We are contacting everyone who has already made a reservation for these months.

7)  Our Social Ministry Team is working on a plan to help our older and at risk members with grocery shopping.  If you need help with shopping or would like to help shop, please contact Karen White (610-383-6354).

8) Please remember to continue to give financially to Good Shepherd.  We still have to pay the mortgage and other bills. Please continue to give and support our ministries during this time so that our ministries continue and are ready to bounce back once the concern is over. Now is a great time to sign up for electronic giving on our website www.luthgoodshep.org. Please contact us if you need assistance setting this up.

9) Visitation:  At this time, Pastor Lynch, our Visiting Shepherds, and Stephen Ministers will cease in-person visits to those who are the most fragile in our community. While we understand that our presence is comfort, we do not want to carry contagions. We will visit by phone or written notes to stay in touch and listen for needs the community can meet. We encourage others in our community to reach out in these same ways to care for those who are shut-in, elderly and vulnerable in this time of concern. Christ calls us to love our neighbors and we can do that even if not in person. We have been instructed by local senior communities that we cannot visit our members nor host worship gatherings in those facilities. Our staff and leaders will follow the instructions of authorities in these matters. In critical cases and end of life care, we will consult with families and care facilities in order to determine how and when to safely visit and bear God’s presence to those in need.

10) How to Contact Us: If you need to contact the Pastor or the church office, please do so by email or call the church office.

11) Please pray for those who are sick, those who mourn, those who live in fear and those who lead in these anxious times. Pray for our community, our staff and leaders, and our ongoing proclamation of grace and hope through Jesus Christ. Pray that we know God’s presence clearly and can wisely discern our path in the uncertainty and confusion.

God is, indeed, a very present help in times of trouble. In all things, we rest on that promised presence to take each step forward with hope and comfort. Everything, seen and unseen is under God’s love and mercy. Now is the time to remind one another of that presence in the body of Christ.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Susan Lynch and the Executive Committee