600 Ridgewood Road Maplewood, NJ. 07040 Online Sunday Worship Available on YouTube at 7 a.m.

Pastoral Letter

June 1, 2020

Grace and peace to you, Morrow Church friends,

It has been a long two and a half months without you. The last thing any new pastor would want is to be separated from the community when our priority is the building of new relationships. However, it has been good to “see” you in worship and in small groups and to communicate with you electronically by computer and by telephone.  I am so grateful to our team who has risen beautifully to this challenge, while the grief, the burden, and the pressure has been so great. I hope you will join me in thanking them, appreciating, and valuing them. They deserve it.

As news of the declining rates of COVID 19 make the headlines, we are eager to get back to church. Personally, I am eager to see, as other areas begin to open, just how safe we are. Our bishop has given us clear directives about making a plan before opening the building. We are making a plan and we will wait, not only for the Holy Spirit, but for an okay from the Governor and our local officials. The staff is reviewing the plans of other churches, conferences, and organizations to determine what is right for Morrow Church. We will not open until the leadership at Morrow Church says that it is time. We want to keep us all healthy and safe and be wise in whatever we do.

Online worship has been a great success and we have been asked to continue to do that work, especially because when we do gather, church will be different.  We know that we won’t be singing together for some time.  We know that we will need to distance and limit our capacity in the worship space.  We know that our communion will be shared in very different ways.  Worship in the sanctuary will likely not happen before Fall.

I wanted to share with you some of the steps we are taking:

  • We are marking out 6 feet of distance in the sanctuary to determine our capacity.
  • We will be investing in masks and sanitizer to be distributed.
  • We are considering outdoor worship for the summer.
  • We are considering staggering staff presence in the building

Our staff plans to return to the building together in September. Be assured, that we are no less busy. We are in many ways busier as we learn new ways to be the church and to do the work that God has called us to do. We will find our way. We have appreciated all of your support and your affirmation of the work.

Grateful to be with you in ministry,