April 1, 2020
Most of us are familiar with the Kubler-Ross Stages of Grief Model. I think it applies to what we are going through with the virus. Where do you think you/we are on the progression?
March 31, 2020
March 24, 2020
I just found an interesting website: “Worldometer”
Here is the link to graphic counting of Corona cases and deaths.
Here is the link to the meter counting abortions worldwide since January 1, 2020.
Here is the link to all kinds of information on world population.
March 23, 2020
March 20, 2020
I am wondering how long the Church is going to allow the faithful to live without access to the Blessed Sacrament. This article, from a Roman Catholic perspective, is fascinating.
Here are the guidelines we have currently been given for our Diocese for churches that still want to offer Holy Communion. I have highlighted portions that struck me particularly.
As we are living in unprecedented times, I have been asked by many people about the distribution of the Holy Communion in the current situation. If you choose to offer Holy Communion to your congregation during this Coronavirus Pandemic, please use one of the following.
Several options have been discussed, and I would like to authorize the following for the Anglican Diocese of the South.
Option 1. Priest celebrates the Eucharist and consecrates the elements and consumes both kinds himself. If there is an acolyte or layperson with him, he is served in one kind (bread). The priest consecrates enough bread for anticipated distribution to members. For a period of time for the priest to determine, the priest distributes the Body (in a zip-locked bag which has only been handled by washed hands plus hand cleaning solution with 60%+ alcohol) to people on Sunday after the service to those (1, 2, or 3 at a time with proper social distancing) who drive through the parking lot or by the front of the church after watching one of the online services.
At this point I can’t visualize this working for us.
Option 2. Every home a tabernacle. Priest celebrates the Eucharist as described above. Priest consecrates enough bread for a month’s supply for every household in his church. Once a month a member of the household comes to the church parking lot to receive the supply (in a zip-locked bag which has only been handled by washed hands plus hand cleaning solution with 60%+ alcohol). The consecrated Body is placed in a prominent place of honor in the home and the family shares it weekly on Sunday after watching one of the online services.
My heart sank when I saw the words “once a month.” For how long?
Regardless of the method used, the priest needs to be vigilant in not touching the Bread and in conveying it to the member with care so as to prevent transmission of the virus. Those receiving the Body should say the Lord’s Prayer prior to receiving Holy Communion.
Archbishop Beach has given us permission to continue to meet for Morning Prayer as long as we stay well below the 10 person limit, maintain social distancing, and be sure to wipe down door knobs and surfaces with disinfectant.
I would also like to make the sanctuary available to anyone who wants to come in and spend some time in quiet meditation and prayer and adoration. There is consecrated bread and wine on the altar, but not for consumption. Please contact me before you come so we can ensure that the church is open.
You may also maintain your pledge / offering in three ways: 1) by mail, 2) putting it in the mail slot in the office door, or 3) leaving it in the offering plate. Bank deposit will be made on Monday’s as usual.
Keeping well-fed during this season of isolation is so important. Let me recommend Sermon Index as a wonderful resource. This link will take you to the main menu. I highly recommend anything by A.W. Tozer, Alan Redpath, Leonard Ravenhill, and Warren Wiersbe. Redpath is one of my particular favorites–red hot British expository preaching. Ravenhill is an evangelist. Tozer, a mystic, Wiersbe, a solid Bible teacher. Here is the link to the Kinlaw collection.
Finally, Cradle of Prayer is a great resource for morning and evening prayer, using the classic 1928 Prayer Book. Each service is read by truly gifted lectors, including beautiful chanting of the canticles. This link will take you to the Daily Office page.
March 18, 2020
From Archbishop Foley Beach
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Jesus Christ,
We serve a faithful and loving God, and He has called us to serve Him in challenging times. The coronavirus continues to spread across the globe, and while many despair and are living in fear, we have hope and peace because in Jesus Christ we know how the story ends. This has not taken the Lord by surprise, and it gives us an incredible opportunity to live in faith toward God, in love toward our neighbors, and in service toward our communities.
I write to you after meeting with our bishops this afternoon. We considered the advice given by the President of the United States’ Coronavirus Team, the Centers for Disease Control, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and by governmental authorities in Canada, Mexico, and the United States strongly advising that no public gatherings of 10 or more people be held. It is our desire to partner with our civic officials as they seek to exercise their duty to protect our communities. Therefore, the College of Bishops is asking our congregations not to hold in-person worship services or gatherings until further notice, but to offer, when possible, worship services on a virtual platform. We realize these are extreme measures that we had hoped to avoid, but for the health and welfare of everyone in our churches and communities, this is something we all must put into practice immediately.
Each diocesan bishop will communicate to his diocese regarding the specifics of how this will be applied in each local diocesan context.
Let us continue to pray for one another, the people we serve, and the communities in which we live.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9, ESV).
Faithfully in Jesus Christ,
The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach
Archbishop and Primate, Anglican Church in North America