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COVID-19 and Zumbro | Update on May 1, 2020

1) During the season of Easter, we are remembering our baptism. This is especially appropriate as we envision the new cross that will be at the front of our sanctuary. Zumbro is named after a river. We imagine the River of Life flowing out of the cross, under the chancel, and out to the new baptismal font. As you prepare for worship, have a container of water beside you and be ready to trace the sign of the cross on your forehead.

And here’s a homework assignment: if you don’t know the date on which you were baptized, see if you can find out by the end of Easter (May 31). It will be a great way to remember God’s claim upon your life.

2)This coming Sunday (and Wednesday) we will be celebrating communion during worship. In a world of COVID-19, it may feel a bit different, but hopefully will be lifegiving.

We invite you to set a table at home. Gather a piece of bread and some wine/juice before worship begins. When the time comes, a pastor will consecrate the elements. If there is more than one person in the household, you will speak the words to each other: “The body of Christ given for you; the blood of Christ shed for you.” If there is only one in the household, the pastor will speak the words directly to you.

I look forward to sharing the meal together.  In a mystical sense, the Risen Christ will be present with us.

3) We are in the midst of an Easter sermon series: We’re All in this Together. All sermons are available online.

Here is the schedule for the remaining weeks:

  • May 3 – Believers Pray for Boldness in Their Daily Work – Acts 4:13-31
  • May 10 – What Does It Mean to be a Family These Days? – Col. 3:12-21
  • May 17 – Being a Good Samaritan in a Day of COVID-19  – Luke 10:25-37
  • May 24 – Jesus Breaks Down Walls and So Do We – Ephesians 2:11-22
  • May 31 (Pentecost) – We’re All in This Together – Acts 2:1-21

4) We occasionally hear of people who’ve been hospitalized, but only occasionally. We encourage you to let us know if you’re entering the hospital or just getting home. We would welcome the opportunity to connect with you and spend some time in prayer.

5) I am soon starting a four-week zoom Bible study on Colossians. This will be held on the Thursdays in May at 9:00am (May 7-28). The church in Colossae was living in a world of upheaval. People weren’t sure who or what to believe. They needed encouragement and guidance to find the way forward. And most important of all, they needed a baptismal identity grounded in the death and resurrection of Christ. If you’re interested in digging into these issues further and have access to a computer/Zoom, please sign up here, or call the church office at 507-288-2649.

Friends, we are adjusting to COVID-19 one step at a time. Even as some churches are resuming in-person worship, many of us have concerns about not doing that too soon. There are lots of questions still to be answered. We don’t know what that will mean for our church life this summer, but we promise not to forget you. We’re all in this together.

Together we are building bridges of understanding and peace, reaching out with compassion, and sharing the hope of Jesus.

In the strong name of Jesus,

Pastor Vern Christopherson