Hi! If you are visiting our website for the first time, welcome! And thank you for taking the time to check us out!
With the events of 2020, many of us (including our Pastor/Rector!) experienced virtual online worship for the first time - wow, was that different! Now, after over a year of fluctuating ability to meet for in-person worship, it seems we are unlikely to return to an "only online" worship. Hallelujah! However, we will continue to live-stream our worship services, and for the time being offer curb-side communion for those who are more comfortable maintaining a little more distance. If you wish to join us online, check out the link to our Facebook page - worship will be streamed via Facebook Live. Videos of past worship services will remain available for streaming at any time, and links to the appropriate worship bulletin are posted on the Facebook page each week.
Our building occupancy and use has been, and continues to be determined by the Episcopal Pastoral Directive and recommendations from our ELCA Bishop, by the status of COVID-19 infection rates and orders issued by various governmental authorities. We are still in Phase 2 of the Pastoral Directive, and so we’re allowed a total of 25 people in the sanctuary (including the Altar Party). We have arrangements for overflow seating for persons #26 and up in St. Michael’s Hall (our fellowship room), where they can watch the service on a large ceiling-mounted TV and may still receive Holy Communion there.
Here’s a recap of our current guidelines for in-person worship:
Low-income families with infants & small children often have to choose between diapers and other necessities such as food or transportation. Diaper Depot helps those families stretch their budgets by offering a free package of diapers, and currently serves an average of 173 infants & children each month. Due to COVID-19, a small but dedicated crew of volunteers have been operating our Diaper Depot as a "curbside" service each month so we can continue to serve our neighbors, whose needs are greater now than ever!
Much of our community ministry efforts focus on supporting organizations that seek to find solutions to poverty, and more specifically food insecurity. This includes the Green Apple Food Pantry (formerly John Knox Food Pantry), ACCESS of West Michigan, and St. Mark's Cafe. Our ministries include monthly collections as well as special events. During the pandemic, our monthly collections continue as able, and we are supporting many of our ministry efforts with "virtual" events. Even our 16th Annual Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser went virtual!
Matthew 22:36-40 teaches us that we are to love our neighbors as ourselves, and it is our understanding that this means EVERYONE. We strive to show that love in a tangible way through a variety of programs and volunteer events. Reflecting a key phrase of the ELCA, this is "God's Work. Our Hands."