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March 17, 2020
In the last two days, the story that has come to my mind repeatedly is Jesus calming the storm from Mark 4. It is a picture of calm, of course, which makes it an appealing story in times like these, but it is also an affirmation of the lordship of Jesus Christ.
Jesus is Lord, even when the storm is raging. Jesus is Lord, even when there is chaos everywhere we turn. Jesus is Lord, even when we are fearful. Jesus is Lord, even over the wind and the waves, so He is Lord over all.
I have been repeating that to myself as a breath prayer. Perhaps you would like to join me when you are overwhelmed or anxious.
As you know, the situation is fluid, and we are adapting as it changes as well. Please forward church communications to others as you are able, and let us know if there are people still not receiving emails. We will be using this mode of communication quite a bit in the coming days. A couple of things that I want to make sure you know:
- All live worship and all in-person ministry activities are cancelled for the next 30 days.
- Worship will be online-only for Traditional, The Source, and Altar-Umoja for the next 30 days. We are making plans to have The Source and Altar-Umoja services available to stream this week!
- Holy Week and Easter worship will be online-only.
- Buildings are open with essential staff only.
- All weddings have been cancelled.
- Funeral services inside the building are not permitted.
- We are observing the no more than 10 persons in a place rule, so we are asking all volunteers, especially those in at-risk categories, to stay home.
Also, we are working to quickly create systems for congregational care. If you have a need, please do not hesitate to let us know. You can contact me by responding to this email, or you can reach out to Ken Coneby at [email protected].
We are also diligently working for ways to keep you and your small group or Sunday School class connected. By this Sunday, we are hoping to have a video or call platform available for you to use. Please let Emil Niz know if you are interested in utilizing this program with your group at [email protected]. We are working on schedules to accommodate everyone. This is a great way to pray and support one another at a distance.
I am praying for all of you, for our city, our country, and our world.
Rev. Brandi Tevebaugh Horton
Senior Associate Pastor
First Methodist Houston