May 17, 2020 - Grace and peace from our brother, Jesus, Amen. Sunday was the Sixth Sunday of Easter. This coming Sunday will be the 7th and last Sunday of Easter.
After two months of isolation, Paxton Methodist is going to open its doors on Pentecost—Sunday, May 31st (not this coming Sunday but the next). In the guidelines from the United Methodist Church, the first thing recommended is that those folks over 60 stay at home. That “over 60” age pretty much makes up our congregation, so if any Paxton Methodist feels uncomfortable, stay home with no feelings of guilt. Covid 19 cases are spiking in East Texas, and I also have concerns. When returning to church, it is recommended that people wear masks and gloves and maintain social distancing—which I certainly plan to do.
We are so small that we will be able to socially distance easily. We will even have extra room, if some other folks would like to join us. We are not going to meet for Sunday School, since that requires close quarters. Our worship service begins at 10:00. We will see how things go and make a week-by-week decision about meeting.
The month of May we have been collecting cans of fruit for Community Christian Services. Sue and I will gather those at the end of the month and see that they get to CCS. In June our donation will be paper towels and toilet paper. Uh oh! Well, we’ll try but won’t necessarily guarantee results. Our nursing home ministries are on hold until further notice: Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are still on lockdown.
A lady Sue and I know in Nacogdoches tested positive several weeks ago for Covid 19; she passed away last week. She was a very sweet lady, and I know her family and dear friends mourn her loss. When Covid 19 hits close to home, it is no longer a political issue—it is very real.
The first lesson for Sunday comes from Acts 17. Paul is speaking on Mars Hill in Athens, the spiritual, philosophical, and educational hub for the Western World. The Greek and Roman world was pagan, but they were fascinated by the Jewish idea of just one creator God. Paul’s belief that a Jewish peasant executed by the state was the human personification of the “unknown god” was going to be a hard sell. Paul, however, wasn’t known for shying away from a challenge.
Whoever you are, in whatever faith you were born, whatever creed you profess; if you come to this house to find God you are welcome here. Paxton United Methodist Church is an inviting church that takes to heart the idea of “Open Doors, Open Hearts, and Open Minds.” Normally Sunday School starts at 9:30 and Worship begins at 10:00. But during the Pandemic our usually “open doors” are closed. Our email address is email@example.com. If you would like the weekly email newsletter about Paxton Methodist, you can send your email address to the Paxton email address, and I will add you to the list. God’s Speed.