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5-25-20 FUMC Update

It’s a NEW day!
 
For the last few months we have made adjustments to change the way we worship, study, serve, and pray together because our buildings have been closed and our activities have been postponed. We’ve all had to learn new things, and we’re STILL learning new things (as you could see by the glitch in broadcasting our sermon yesterday … you can watch on Facebook HERE.)
 
Now … we’re learning NEW ways to gather again!
 
Yes, it will be different for a little while (see attached guidelines). We will be staying 6 feet apart from each other, we won’t be shaking hands or hugging each other, inside we will be wearing masks in and out of our seats,  we won’t be hanging out in close crowds before or after worship or Sunday schools, we’ll be squirting our hands with Purell, we won’t be singing together for a few weeks, and MANY of our friends will not even be joining us yet! 
 
But it IS a new day because this Sunday we will begin to gather again! This Sunday is also Pentecost Sunday, the new day that Jesus sent His Holy Spirit to be with us through the end of time. And it’s a new day for our Seniors who are graduating! How appropriate that our first day back will have LOTS to celebrate!
 
THIS SUNDAY, MAY 31 ~ 8 a.m. at the Ragsdale’s Home, 270 CR 4228, Winnsboro  ~ WEAR RED! Thanks to all who have let us know you’ll be there (it’s not too late – we’ll bring chairs for you!) We’ll be celebrating PENTECOST and recognizing our three seniors:
Julian Anaya, Landry Deaton, Grant Newton
From the intersection of Church Street and West Broadway, travel west three blocks to FM 852 West. Turn left (west) on FM 852. Go 2 ¾ miles. Turn right (north) on County Road 4228. Go 1400 feet to 270 CR 4228 (driveway on the right; stay on the pavement, don’t go past driveway on dirt road; there will be orange arrows on the county road and driveway)
 
 
TUESDAY, MAY 26, Facebook Devotional, Jeremiah 1: Excuses, Excuses, Excuses ~ While getting ready for our Bible study on  Wednesday, I became fascinated with this incredible prophet who led me to explore why we make excuses NOT to follow God’s will. The video will be on Facebook before noon and the audio will be on the website by Tuesday afternoon. 
 
WEDNESDAY, MAY 27, ZOOM Bible Talk, 10 AM ~ CLICK HERE for the calendar with sign-in instructions. If you haven’t given ZOOM a try, please join us through the summer as we dive DEEP into the chapters that help us connect the overall picture of the Bible. This week we’ll meet Jeremiah, known as the WEEPING Prophet or the RELUCTANT Prophet, and we’ll look at WHY God’s will and our CHOICES matter.
 
SUNDAY, May 31, 8 AM ~ Ragsdale’s Home
SUNDAY, May 31, 10:50 AM ~ Facebook LIVE with Bishop McKee
 
SUNDAY, June 7, 10:50 AM ~ Partial Worship in the Sanctuary, Doors will be open at 10:20 AM ~ Thanks again for letting us know you’ll be here as seating will be limited to keep 6-foot distances. WE WILL ONLY BE USING THE FRONT DOOR on Elm/Church Street, so if you are able, please park leaving the spots closest to the front door for others. (NOTE:  Facebook LIVE will ALWAYS be broadcast live too!)
 
DO YOU NEED A FACE COVERING?  We have men’s, women’s, and children, so please call the office if you need one! Love offerings welcome! (903) 342-6172   
 
I had a wonderful SHORT trip to NW Arkansas this weekend to have some amazing mother-daughter time and see my grandchildren. I always love coming home but I must admit, this time was hard leaving. I continue to PRAY, PRAY, PRAY, that you all remain safe and well, and that this virus is controlled and, ultimately, destroyed!
 
Pastor Debbie

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5-21-20 FUMC Reopening Plan

The Church Council met this week and we’re very excited to SLOWLY but SAFELY begin partial gathering!
Details are on the attached document and I, for one, hope these restrictions will NOT have to be in place for a long time! 
 
Here are the important dates:
 
May 24, 10:50 a.m. ~ Memorial Day Worship, Facebook Live
 
May 31, 8 a.m. ~ All Church OUTDOOR Worship at the Ragsdales (270 CR 4228, Winnsboro) ~ If you have not yet let me know, please REPLY to this emaiand let me know how many chairs you will need or if you will be listening in your car. MANY THANKS to the Ragsdale family for sharing their home and beautiful meadow with us!
 
May 31, 10:50 a.m. ~ Facebook Live Worship with Bishop McKee
 
June 7 and ongoing in Phase 2, 10:50 a.m ~ RETURN TO THE SANCTUARY ~ We will worship together in the Sanctuary (and Facebook LIVE)!  Please reply to this email and let us know if you’ll be attending so we know how to seat people! I truly do recognize how sitting in the same seat every Sunday is part of the comfort in coming to church and sitting with your pew neighbors. Please know we want to get back to “normal” as soon as possible; but in this interim, please be kind and supportive of the amazing ushers who are willing to work very hard to seat as many people as SAFELY as possible.  
 
ARRANGEMENTS FOR PHASE 2 of Returning to the Sanctuary ~ Again, we hope these adjustments will NOT be “forever” but we hope that being together will far outweigh the minor safety inconveniences.
 
Here is a recap of what you’ll want to know ~
 
1. If you are 65 or older and/or have any underlying health conditions, we will support your decisions to stay home until you feel safe. We will continue Facebook LIVE and ZOOM Wednesday Bible studies at 10 a.m., so please make decisions that are best for YOU! (See CDC guidelines here.)
 
2. I want to thank Trustee Chair Danny Moss and Custodian Deloris Loftin who are doing everything they can to be sure everything is disinfected and that we will be separated by 6 feet to keep everyone safe. 
 
3.  I also want to thank Worship Chair Penny Boice and Communion Chair Sue Gross and ALL of our wonderful ushers who are working hard to make sure worship is joyful, sacred, and SAFE! I hope we will all come to worship cheerfully and leave worship inspired by God, but we will come and go wearing masks, and we will be seated and dismissed without gathering before and after church. (If you need a mask, let me know. We do have some children’s masks too!)  An usher will squirt your hands with disinfectant when you arrive and seat you, maybe not in your regular seat, and help you leave safely by row squirting your hands as you go.
 
Again, details are attached and please let me know if we have any questions. We will do the best we can with what we know at the time and as we know more we will try to do better! We will weather these changes TOGETHER, just like we have in the last two months since COVID-19 forced us to close our buildings … because … 
 
GOD IS WORKING FOR GOOD! 
 
Stay well and HAPPY MEMORIAL WEEKEND!
Pastor Debbie

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