White Oaks United Church Update – COVID-19
ALL ACTIVITIES AT OUR CHURCH WILL BE CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.
May the grace and peace of Christ be yours in these anxious times.
We are concerned about the effect that social isolation might have on our members and have and continue to put into place measures to help us stay in touch with one another. This includes communication by telephone to check in with one another, and also some form of Sunday worship made available through the internet and/or phone.
We ask you to continue to practice good hygiene such as hand-washing (saying the Lord’s Prayer while you wash gives you the recommended time), coughing into a tissue or the crook of your elbow, and social distancing (1-2 metres) when you are with others.
We also hope that you will continue to hold one another in your prayers and take the initiative to be in contact with each another – especially those who are in self-quarantine or in lock-down at a long-term care facility.
I am holding you in my prayers and sending virtual hugs.
A Letter to the congregation at White Oaks United Church
Dear White Oaks Church family
I know it was not too long ago that you received the last letter to the congregation. However there are some things that we would like to inform you of and during this time it is always good to get something a bit different to read, especially during these colder days when it is a bit harder to get out. We are all missing human contact and that was quite evident on Thursday as folks were spending time talking together outside the church after picking up their Lenten package even though it was quite chilly.
How blessed we are during these long months to have Rev. Anne as our spiritual leader. The effort she and the worship team have put into keeping us connected and involved has been amazing and I know that at times they must all be feeling the weight of it all. So, on behalf of all of us that are not nearly as talented we graciously thank you folks.
Just like everything else we will not be having our usual annual meeting as we normally would however we will attempt to have a brief meeting on Zoom immediately following the Zoom church service on February 28th. You should have already received the annual report and we will review the report, finances and vote on the new budget at that time.
Some other news to inform you of and that is. Rev. Nancy Waterman has informed the United Church of her planned retirement effective April 21st, 2021. She feels that ministering to White Oaks has been a great blessing in her life and she is thankful for the opportunity to know us. Her and Glenn have sold their home and will be downsizing to a townhome condominium in Byron. She wishes us well and we wish her well in the future. She looks forward to visiting with us when circumstances allow. A retirement celebration is planned for the future. If you would like to contribute to a retirement gift please mark your envelope accordingly.
With Nancy’s retirement, we have a lot of work ahead of us. We need to form a Search Committee, usually a group of approximately seven participants that represent the complete spectrum or our congregation. This committee will be tasked with updating our congregational profile and other documents to declare a vacancy. These will be posted so that applicants can view them and determine their interest in our congregation. We are looking for volunteers for this committee. If you are interested please make it known to Dave Thompson and/or John Schulze. We will try to finalize the group at the Annual Meeting.
In closing we wish you all well. Try to stay connected over the next while and hopefully as the days get a little longer and the cold temperatures are replaced with warmer spring days our spirits will be lifted too.
Yours in Christ,
Dave Thompson, Chair of Council and John Schulze, Vice Chair of Council
Here is the You Tube link for tomorrow’s service. It will be live on You Tube at midnight tonight.
Welcome to this wintry spring morning. The poet was right when he said that April is the cruelest month. It certainly is teasing and tormenting us this year.
Here is today’s spiritual practice.
Wednesday, April 21st
Scripture: Mark 16:9-18
The Shorter Ending of Mark
[[And all that had been commanded them they told
briefly to those around Peter. And afterwards Jesus
himself sent out through them, from east to west,
the sacred and imperishable proclamation of eternal salvation. ]]
The Longer Ending of Mark
[[Now after he rose early on the first day of the week,
he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast
out seven demons. She went out and told those who had been
with him, while they were mourning and weeping.
But when they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her,
they would not believe it.
After this he appeared in another form to two of them,
as they were walking into the country.
And they went back and told the rest,
but they did not believe them.
Later he appeared to the eleven themselves
as they were sitting at the table; and he upbraided
them for their lack of faith and stubbornness,
because they had not believed those who saw him
after he had risen. And he said to them,
‘Go into all the world and proclaim the good news
to the whole creation. The one who believes and is baptized
will be saved; but the one who does not believe
will be condemned. And these signs will accompany
those who believe: by using my name they will
cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues;
they will pick up snakes in their hands,
and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them;
they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.’
Hymn to Accompany Scripture
VU 158 Christ is Alive
Holy One, Jesus is alive,
so I seek his presence as I ponder and pray.
(Reflection on scripture and life)
Risen One: Good Shepherd, True Vine,
Light of the world, Bread of Life, you are all I need.
Lead me to green pastures…
nurture my joy…
lighten my fear…
feed my soul…
Heal those who are ill:
I pray for all who work in unsafe conditions…
for those without paid sick days…
for those without a living wage…
Bring justice for all.
Loving Friend, I pray for those I love…
for other concerns that I carry in my heart…
I pray in your strong and holy name
and in the words you taught:
The presence of the Risen One
in everyone I meet today.
The love of the Risen One
in every face I see today.
The peace of the Risen One
in every voice I hear today
so that I may be
Be safe. Stay well. Keep connected.
With love and prayers,
Sunday morning worship is at 10:25 where we seek to connect God’s ways with our lives through scripture, music and prayer. Sometimes with presentations of video, drama, and liturgical dance.
Our active Sunday School grows the children of our younger families and teaches the Way of Jesus.
A well-equipped and professionally staffed nursery is available for children age 3 and younger at any point during the worship service.
Refreshments and Fellowship Time follow the Service.