Dear Friends,

A few weeks ago, Pastor Darin mentioned in a sermon that she likes having a calendar to help keep her on tract with things going on, or things cancelled, as we continue plodding through this pandemic. I also like having a calendar, an old-fashioned hanging one, that lists birthdays, anniversaries, and other significant events in my family. But, like you, there are many things that have been set aside, intimate gatherings, long dreamed of vacations, the ritual of school shopping, the list goes on.  As we see some of our COVID-19 restrictions being lifted, we get a glimmer of hope for what is to come, a sense of reunion to our lives that we once lived. We look for how the state and local leaders will guide us in the days and months to come.

As important as calendars are in our lives, they are not the only thing that center us during the year.  We still have the ability to recognize familiar changes without knowing the day or date by observing changes around us.  Summer fruits and vegetables in the market, children growing into new developmental stages, and the starlit nights coming emerging earlier than the day before.

In the life of the church we are experiencing positive change as we order and receive new electronic equipment which will bring us into a new era of offering live streamed worship while we continue planning for reopening our Sunday services to those who are able to join us.  We know there are many of you who may not feel safe returning to the traditional Sunday morning service, and we want you to know that we are doing everything we can to make sure you have the ability to stay connected to St. Mark’s as we worship together.  Thank you to all who completed and returned your surveys which help to guide us to what you need and desire in this new season.

In the days and weeks ahead, we are writing a plan to open the doors for Sunday worship as we work with our elected officials and the Cal-Pac Conference guidelines. The service may not feel like it once did, but we look forward to gathering together however you feel safest.  There are so many people working on this reopening project so I ask that you to continue holding them in prayer as they look at the community who relies upon our campus for their events, as well as the congregational needs.  Our first goal is to ensure the health and safety of everyone who sets their calendars for events they have traditionally held here.

I pray for each one of you as you continue to look at those events you’ve set aside.  I pray that the season will come soon when you can gather together and rejoice with those you have missed.  May it be so.

Peace,

Pastor Jeri