Wesley UMC Update from Rev. Jeana Martin & Rodney Fink Concerning Covid-19 (Coronavirus)
March 16, 2020 Dear Wesley United Methodist Church and Preschool, Grace and peace to each of you! We are in a challenging time of change in our communities and in the world and during this time we are to take precautions to help minimize the spread of the Covid-19 (Coronavirus). One of the ways we will do this is by moving to an online worship format for the next four Sundays. Beginning this Sunday, March 22, 2020, we will gather for worship online. The details of this are being worked out and we will keep you updated on how to connect online. This is a difficult decision to make, especially as we approach Easter, and it is a necessary decision for the protection of those who are vulnerable in our community. More details will follow about this. I invite you to like the Facebook Page and to check for updates on the church website: www.wesleyharlingen.org The church staff will be working remotely beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020. The church phone will be forwarded to Katie Rios, administrative assistant. Please continue to contact Wesley UMC via the church phone number 956-423-6156. Also beginning on Tuesday, March 17th, all small groups and gatherings will cease meeting in person. If your group would like to meet via Zoom, please call the church number and Katie will help your group with a Zoom Meeting. During this time, I will be offering pastoral care via phone, Zoom or Facetime. Please know that I am here for you as we walk through this time together. An online prayer gathering will take place on Wednesdays at 6:00 pm. More information about how to join this will follow. We will also be utilizing a new phone tree to help keep people connected and meet the needs of our community. If you would be willing to serve as a point of contact for a portion of the phone tree, please call the church office (956-423-6156) or email Katie at email@example.com As of today, Wesley Preschool is open and has taken precautions to help keep the students and teachers safe. Maudie Cox, our preschool director, and I are in contact and we are both monitoring the situation. If something changes, we will notify our preschool families and the church. Social distancing means we are not able to be together physically but it does not mean we have to be disconnected from one another completely. Please check on each other via phone and email. This is a time to continue to care for each other in new ways. As we move into a time when our lives and our daily routines will be shifting, I encourage you in the days ahead to be diligent in prayer. Take precautions and check on your neighbors. In this season we are called to be “anam cara” (soul friends) for one another. As your pastor, I invite you to reflect on two scriptures:
“Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.” ~1 John 4:7 “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God.” ~Isaiah 43:2-3a God is with us and our call is to love each other in this time of challenge and change. May we be faithful in prayer and continue to care for each other.
Much love and peace, Rev. Jeana Martin, Pastor Rodney Fink, Wesley UMC Church Council Chair
Wesley United Methodist Church 1406 E. Austin Ave. Harlingen, Texas 78550