Dear Brothers and Sisters In Christ!
It is with sadness, but yet with the confidence that comes with much prayer and thought, and after consultation with many of the people on Cabot United Methodist Church’s Administrative Board, this email is to convey the decision to cancel the Worship Services scheduled for March 21st and March 22nd, 2020 at the Cabot United Methodist Church. This was not a decision arrived at easily, because if ever there was a time when the need for God’s people to gather for prayer, worship, and an assurance of God’s love, concern, and presence was obvious, this is one of those times. In times of uncertainty, challenge, and fear, drawing together with other believers to worship, pray, sing, fellowship, and hear God’s Word can undoubtedly be a source of strength and encouragement as we remember God’s past faithfulness and God’s promises to always be with us. However, as current events have unfolded and the scope and seriousness of this pandemic have become more and more obvious, out of an abundance of caution and concern for those in our faith family who may be the most vulnerable, cancellation of our Worship Services became the most prudent choice for the safety of all. Even though at this point there have been no confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in Butler County, yet because many people have been shown to have the Coronavirus even though they exhibit no symptoms, or very mild symptoms, there is the strong likelihood there are indeed people in Butler County who have the Coronavirus and simply do not know that for sure, which increases the possibility of exposing others to the disease. Another consideration is the strong recommendations from our President, Governor, Bishop, and District Superintendent, that even though Religious Organizations such as the Cabot United Methodist Church are considered an essential, life sustaining entity, that we refrain from gathering people together for the time being. All these contributed to our arrival at this decision.
Although we will not gather together physically for worship as a community of faith this weekend, as your Pastor, I would suggest that you spend the time you would have been at a Worship Service in prayer for our world, our country, our counties, our congregation, our denomination, your brothers and sisters in the congregation, your family, immediate and extended, those who are working in the health care fields, at hospitals here and abroad, those who are on the front lines of fighting this pandemic, and for all those who have been affected by the Coronavirus in any number of ways, as well as for all those who are in leadership positions at this crucial time in human history. Our Scriptures for this week are : I Samuel 16 : 1 – 13, Psalm 23 : 1 – 6, Ephesians 5 : 8 – 20, and John 9 : 1 – 41. These are wonderful passages of Scripture with many insights into God’s great love for God’s people. I also would covet your prayers, and please know that I am keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers in these tumultuous times. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have need of pastoral care, or know of such a need in the congregation. I can receive phone calls and text messages at 814 – 688 – 4124, and my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember, Our Good Shepherd will lead us through the darkest of valleys. (Psalm 23 : 4) Even in the midst of great distress and trouble, God is still God, and God is holding you in His strong hands.