An Update From your Pastor's Desk - 06.18.2020

An Update From your Pastor's Desk - 06.18.2020

Hello there,

Greetings to you and your family. We hope that you are staying well and healthy. This email update includes important information of what's going on at Oberlin UMC. If you have any questions please feel free to contract us.


Faith and Wellness

I have been thinking about faith and wellness a lot lately.

I've wondered:
how my faith affects my wellness,
how my faith affects the wellness of others,
how my wellness affects my faith,
how my wellness affects the faith of others,
how my faith affects my faith,
how my faith affects the faith of others,
how my wellness affects my wellness,
and how my wellness affects the wellness of others.

It is this last one that has really invited me to pause and think deeply. My own wellness affects the wellness of others. My spiritual, mental, emotional and physical wellness affect my interactions with my family, neighbors, colleagues, laity, people whom I encounter in person, in virtual meetings, on phone calls, in emails and texts.

These interactions are a gift and a responsibility. I believe it is my responsibility to bring the best of myself to each encounter. If I am honest with myself, I know that there have been moments over these past few months when I have not been as well as I could have been. I have learned more about myself and the need to give myself permission to tend to my wellness so that I can be better for those around me, which allows them to explore the depths of their wellness also.

I also have been exploring that I do not know the full extent of what wellness looks like for my neighbor.

It has opened up a season of listening more intently than I have before to the voices of my neighbor. If I am to love my neighbor, Lord help me love my neighbor as they long to be loved, not as I want them to be loved.

My personal mission statement that has guided me for the last several years is: To know, discover, and proclaim God's unconditional love. During this liminal season, I am discovering this anew, for myself, and for others. I am grateful for what I am learning, and welcome conversation partners for the journey.

Your life affects mine, and so many others. So, I wonder what I can learn about what it means for you to be well, and what role each of us has in investing in that.

--Rev. Shelly Petz
Clergy Faith & Wellness

Remember - Back in the sanctuary:

Oberlin UMC will begin worshipping “in our sanctuary” on Sunday, June 21, 2020 at 10:45 AM. Facemasks, gloves and hand sanitizers will be available. Will worship be exactly as it was when we left what we knew as “normal”, you might ask?

We will continue to have “young disciple time”. But it will look a little different. Children will not be gathering at the front for their time, but rather will remain with their parents in the pew. The noisy change offering will still be available, but rather will be collected as you enter or leave the sanctuary, and this will be the way regular tithes/offerings will be received as well.
Nursery and educational opportunities as we have observed in the past are not currently available. If you have concerns about children opportunities, you are encouraged to speak with Pastor Gordon, and we will discuss needs and how and when additional children ministry can be offered.
Some individuals will wear face masks, and some will not. There will be face masks available, should you desire.
Bulletins, hymnals and Bibles - weekly bulletins will continue to be emailed out and some people will want to print their own bulletin and bring it with you to worship. All Bibles, hymnals and song books have been removed from the pews. The words to songs and the liturgy will be available through the bulletin or on the screens during worship. If you bring your Bible or a hymnal, you will want to be sure to take it with you following worship.
Hospitality – we can be a warm, friendly and caring community of believers without handshakes and hugs. It is a good idea to remember that even though you may feel safe shaking hands, elbow bumping or sharing hugs, not everyone in attendance may feel comfortable to share in that manner. We can share caring for others through waving hands, smiling and respecting social distancing.
Seating – yes, we will maintain social distancing when we re-enter the sanctuary. What does that mean for you? You may sit with family residing in the same household. There will be pews that will be unavailable for seating for the present time. Our ushers will be available to help you find the best pew for you.
Remember, if you do not feel well, or should you feel unsafe in gatherings, we encourage you to stay at home.
With our current equipment, Sunday service cannot be streamed until after recording and uploading. Should you have questions, please call the church office, 785.475.3067.


Pastor Gordon