My first Sunday back to church after being away for more than a year, felt a bit strange, like remembering a dream you had many times before. It was just a handful of people, Pastor, worship leaders, the musicians, really, just Daniel with Gregg and Michael doing all the singing.
We met that Saturday to go over the logistics with how things were going to work, preparing for the congregation’s return to the sanctuary for live and in person worship.
So many changes since the pandemic took hold, but CGS looks the same, we all look pretty much the same, but still, it feels different. Familiar yet new, and I guess that’s true in many ways. We RSVP to attend live, but that will now change by next week! For that first Sunday, was it mask on, mask off? We still line up for communion yet maintain our distance in one single line and we all exit in one direction. The cups in the trays still have wine and grape juice, yet they are spaced apart, so we made tweaks, some fine tuning on how to interact live, we are cautious and want to stay safe, but we are glad to be back.
There are other changes happening at CGS too, the transitioning of Jean and Susan off council, we elected new officers, Skye as our new president, Petra as vice president and Bob takes on the role of secretary. We welcome Gregg and Adam to council. We have a new large monitor in the sanctuary, that will come in handy, finally something clearer to read and sing by. We will continue to have our services broadcasted on YouTube, we will probably have many more Zoom meetings too ... we are a techie bunch and lucky to have all these options.
The architectural plans for the new bathrooms and kitchen were approved by council. These are all positive changes and we as a congregation have proven that we can adapt, change and be new.
That first Sunday back was also my first time doing altar guild, do I remember how this is done? Where's the what-cha-ma-call-it? Where's Lois ... oh yes Janet, is now overseeing this role! And we forgot to light all the altar candles, even though we filled them with oil and tested then on Saturday. Steve sent a personal chat asking why they weren't lit! Janet and I ... whoops, don't say anything!
And that’s the fun part of being in person ... there are hiccups, there are things that go awry, it doesn't always purr like a well-oiled engine. It has been a long time since we gathered, it felt, well different and yet the same, but also warm, nice, and fun too, a place full of friendly faces.
But our biggest news and change is Pastor Manda is taking on a new and exciting role as the assistant to the bishop of the Sierra Pacific synod. We will miss Pastor Manda; we love her and wish her great success! Praise be to God!
~ Jerry Clark, CGS Council
Christ the Good Shepherd
Various editorials, articles, and other items of interest.