Dear Rockport Family and Friends,
Grace and peace to you, in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ! I'm excited to (finally) get to write this note! It's been 6 months and 27 weekends since we have last worshipped together in person at Rockport. Together we have been sharing in worship through the gift of technology and connecting with one another through calls, zoom meetings, coffee hours, and conversations, and even virtual book clubs. At the meeting of the Rockport Reopening Team on Wednesday evening, we made the decision to move to Level 2 of Rockport's Reopening Plan (Orange.) The Reopening Diagram can be downloaded here. Beginning this Sunday, September 20, 2020, Rockport will resume in-person worship services at 10:00am on Sunday mornings. Worship will be inside the sanctuary and no bulletins will be printed. Plan to participate by using the information available on the screens or by bringing your device to download the bulletin.
As you prepare to return to Rockport for in person worship, remember that things will be a bit different than they were in March. Please familiarize yourself with the What to Expect When You Return to Church information available for download here. Remember that reservations are required for all those who plan to attend worship - you can reserve your space by clicking here. Please reserve one space for each person who will be attending worship with you.
For those who are unable to attend and those who are not ready to return to in person worship, we will continue offering virtual options on Facebook, YouTube, and on our website www.rockportumc.org. Because our virtual options will be a recording of the Sunday morning in person service, these options will be available on Sunday afternoons at 2pm. If you subscribe to our YouTube Channel or follow us on Facebook our recording will be available as soon as it is uploaded each week. If you want to watch on our website, the recording will be available for streaming beginning at 2pm. We are discontinuing Zoom Call-In Worship, but will be in touch about other options to those who regularly call in!
This week, we will continue with our yearly Stewardship Campaign, titled: The Enemies of Gratitude. Together, we'll be focusing on how good stewardship is an act of gratitude and the things that sometimes get in the way of being grateful. My prayer is that together, we've been learning about some of the things that hold us back from true gratitude while we seek to take the next faithful step in our pledging and giving for the year ahead. Our finance committee will soon begin working on the 2021 budget. Each year, your pledges are used to help us build our budget and envision ministry for the year ahead. Now more than ever, your pledges and offerings are needed to help Rockport reimagine our ministry and follow God's call for our ministry. If you did not receive a Stewardship letter or pledge card, or if you need another one, please contact Sara in the office (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will be happy to get you one as soon as possible! We will honor God with our pledges for 2021 on October 4, 2020, which will be Consecration Sunday. That day will be a great day of celebration as we pledge our gifts to God and will also be celebrating the gifts of our 5 confirmation students who have worked hard over the last year to learn about God's love, the United Methodist Church, and the ways that God is calling them to ministry at Rockport.
As always, our Take What You Need Cabinet continues to be a wonderful outreach to the community. Your donations make this ministry possible - so thank you for picking up an extra item here and there - you really are making a difference in people's lives. Please also continue giving to Rockport during this time. Your tithes and offerings make our ministry possible and help us carry out our call to make disciples in the world around us.
Please know that you continue to be in my prayers. If you are in need of pastoral care or conversation, please don’t hesitate to contact me by phone or by email (email@example.com).
Rev. Lorrin Radzik,
Pastor, Rockport UMC