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WELCOME!!


 

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No matter who you are,

or where you are

on life's journey,

You are welcome here!

 

 

 

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VIRTUAL WORSHIP SCHEDULE

NEWS/CURRENT EVENTS

BOOK AND BIBLE STUDY


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Join us starting in July as we participate in a Southern Asia Initiative of the Global Ministries (Christian Church -Disciples Of Christ and the United Church of Christ). We will be examining 4 issues that affect the people of Southern Asia: The Caste System, Human Trafficking, Environmental Justice, and Religious Tolerance.  For 4 weeks we will examine how our faith calls us to respond to these issues that plague Southern Asia. The Dates will be July 4th, 18th, and 25th, with a final service on August 1st including a fellowship hour after church with a traditional Indian/Nepali meal.  There will be a love offering for the meal and opportunities for giving throughout the series, all special funds will be directed to aid Global Ministries in their work to help the people of Southern Asia.  (Please Note: The series will NOT be held on July 11th due to our annual picnic in Rocky RIdge) For more information, please call 301-662-3312.  



Letters from Pastor and Council:

 

 July 2021

Dear Friends,


Its July already! July, for obvious reasons, always gets me thinking about my relationship to my nation. What does it mean to be an American? There are many opinions on this, so allow me to share mine, knowing of course that yours may be different.


There is a feeling that loving this country means you don’t criticize it. “America! Love it or leave it!” as the saying goes. In recent past, I was told many times to leave the country if I didn’t like it. Trust me, the thought has more than crossed my mind. But that attitude is not patriotism, its arrogance. And its misguided. I think the Biblical witness is strong that people of faith can love their nation and at the same time call it to account for injustice. Part of loving our nation is calling out its best and challenging its worst inclinations as well. This country isn’t perfect. It isn’t even the “best country in the world.” (Blasphemy I know…) I don’t think there is a “best country”. That’s silliness. We do a lot of things well, but there are things other nations do better and from which we can learn. As they too can learn from us. At its best, this is a generous nation that has gone out on a limb time and again to be a source of strength for other nations who needed it. We have stood strong in the face of oppression and tyranny and our men and women have given the ultimate sacrifice to change evil into good.


But we haven’t always met the mark, have we? The systematic slaughter of indigenous peoples as we made our way from sea to shining sea. The literal economy of human souls which treated people of color like chattel and has since created a system that has disadvantaged others to our own benefit. The rich and powerful (in my opinion) have (just like in Bible times) used their means to further their own prosperity even while standing on the necks of the poor and disadvantaged. We need a voice to call us to remembrance of our better selves. We need people of faith to stand together and remind our leaders that there is a better way. And that voice is not unpatriotic at all. It’s the most loving thing we can do. To stand with those who stand alone. To call our leaders to account for the way they use the people they are called to serve to advance their own agendas. In the tradition of the prophets and judges of the scriptures, let us live in ways that give voice to those places where we have failed to get it right. And let us lift up those people and times when we have gotten it very right. Because they are many.


Happy July!


And God… make America a blessing!


Pastor Rob+


 


 


REOPENING LETTER

 

Dear Friends,

 

After many months, it is time to let you know that we are beginning the process of reopening for people to join us for weekly worship. Other churches have been opening for the past few weeks; but, at my recommendation, Council has decided to wait a bit to see if infection rates in our area would remain low once people start gathering for worship.  Honestly, things are working remotely, so we were more concerned with gathering safely than gathering quickly.

 

And so I am writing with good news and better news!  The good news: We are inviting people to join us for worship in person starting August 2nd.  The better news: Our live stream broadcasts of worship have been more successful than we imagined and they will continue to be a part of our ongoing worship experience.  So if you don't feel comfortable returning to worship in person yet, you can still join us every week as you have been! 

 

What to expect when you return? 

1. You will be warmly welcomed by someone who will take your name and contact information. Creating a contact list for each service means we will be able to reach everyone should one person end up getting sick at any point. 

2. You will have your temperature taken with our fancy new no-touch thermometer. 

3. You will be asked if you have a mask. If you do not have one with you, we will have one for you! (Masks must be worn at all times, no exceptions.)

4. Hand sanitizer will be available should you want it. 

5. The doors will be open so that there is no need to touch hardware.

 

What will look different?

1. Seating will be intentionally separated from each other.  Families of course will sit together, but we will seat in alternating rows every other row. (They will be clearly marked.) 

2. There will be no passing of the peace in the service.  We would ask you to greet each other with a heartfelt smile and wave instead!

3. There will be no offering during the service. (That doesn't mean we don't need your gifts. LOL)  We will have collection baskets at the doors when you enter and when you leave so you can drop off your tithe. 

4. There will be no Hymns, at least for now. The CDC and the National Council of Churches recommend no singing as that produces more vapor droplets which might spread germs in the sanctuary. A study is coming out in the fall which will have more definitive word on this, but until then, there will be lots of good music, just not vocally!

5. Fellowship hour will NOT resume for the near future. Once the weather cools, we might want to gather outside after church for donuts and coffee, where we can be outdoors and safer in a group. 

 

So, as you can see, we are doing all we can to make sure our reopening is as safe as it can be.  We hope you will join us as you feel able, either in person or on Youtube.  We are excited for this regathering and look forward to the day when we can all be together again soon!! 

 

Much love and know that you are missed!

 

Pastor Rob+

 


No matter who you are,

or where you

are on life's journey,

YOU ARE WELCOME HERE!

 

 JOIN US FOR WORSHIP

Sundays at 11:00 a.m.

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Visit our News section to get all of the info about upcoming events at Grace Church, plus read the current issue of our Grace Vine newsletter.  Click here or on "Calendar" in the menu bar above to see the full event calendar.

 

 
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