This season feelings like being swallowed in a cloud. Our sight is limited. We can only take small steps at a time. But God is undoubtedly with us in the cloud. Jesus is present. He guides us. One step at a time. Or more honestly, one course-correction-step at a time.
Thank you for praying for our Leadership Team. We felt your prayers answered for us as we met to pray and plan this past Monday. We will meet again next Monday to continue our conversation. We plan to give detailed updates on Sunday, April 5th about big picture strategy for this season. Until then, please, keep praying for us. We need your support in prayer as we seek to ground our church as a non-anxious presence for the good of our city.
As we gather online to worship together during this season, I want to let you know about course-correction steps we’re taking for worshipping on Sundays:
Starting this Sunday, we will switch to a centralized broadcast for our worship gatherings. The broadcasts will go live at 10 AM and 5 PM on Sunday. You can join either service at https://stpf.online.church/
I have to admit: I miss meeting in person. I prefer gathering together. I find this new reality hard. I’d rather speak to you than a screen. But this online model is necessary and helpful for the season at hand. The reason for this change is to provide a more stable and consistent format for everyone in the church to use. This model also allows for us to be united as a single church body by meeting together around common service times.
One of the things we value as a church, and which many of you have mentioned to us, is the importance of meeting and worshipping together. We embrace liturgy after all, which means “work of the people.” While there will be a dedicated broadcast for people to watch, we are asking you to prioritize joining in our worship gatherings with other people through video-chat software. (After much trial and error, we officially recommend Zoom.) When you meet together this way, it will make the service less performative and more participatory, less individualistic and more communal, less independent and more interdependent. These broadcasts will also have a host to answer questions and engage with people.
I want to thank our Community Group leaders for their adaptive spirit and eagerness to step up and serve us all. Thank you! Our Community Groups have quickly switched to virtual groups that meet online. Our groups now meet on Sundays for one of the services in addition to their regular meetings.
This is how it works for groups on Sundays: They will meet through video conference 10-15 minutes before their chosen service to chat and catch up. Together, you will be able to respond to the liturgy over your video call. We will also make intentional space within the broadcast for groups to discuss and pray. After the service ends, you’ll process it together before ending your call.
If you are not currently a part of a group, we encourage you to join one. You can find a list of groups here: www.stpetersfireside.org/groups.
During the broadcasts, we will also have a dedicated public video group available for people who aren’t in Community Groups.
Lastly, we will make the full video material accessible on the church website after the 5pm broadcast on Sunday for people to engage on their own afterwards (and for anyone who missed the services). The video will also be available on our church Facebook page.
Thank you for your patience during this time. Thanking you for standing in the cloud with us. We are not alone. We are in this together. And we have a good and faithful God leading the way.