Ash Wednesday is February 17th. John Wesley will have two services on Ash Wednesday — at noon and 6:15 pm — in the Leisure Ministries Room. Sign up to let us know which service you will attend as there are limitations to the number of people who can be seated in the LMR because of Covid concerns.
Following in information about Ash Wednesday and Lent and how the season will be observed a bit differently in 2021.
Pastor Ken Timmerman released this information about changes to our traditional observances of Ash Wednesday, Lent and Easter services because of our worship in the Leisure Ministries Room and our need to follow protocols for social distancing because of Covid.
- We will not be able to have the Shrove Tuesday meal as has been our tradition. Until the vaccine begins to make substantive changes in the Covid numbers for our State, we must refrain from shared meals inside our building.
- On Ash Wednesday we will offer two services. They will be at Noon and 6:15 p.m. (Sign up at this link: John Wesley UMC: Worship in LMR February 17th – ASH WEDNESDAY (signupgenius.com) We will not be able to do the imposition of ashes due to Covid. In each service, we will offer an alternative for the imposition of ashes. We will ask, during the service, for individuals to make the sign of the cross on their foreheads (minus the ashes), and it is our plan to give each attender a small cross as a reminder of our journey to the cross of Christ during Lent. We will not attempt to offer the drive through Ash Wednesday experience as has been done in the past. We will have a time to meet with the children in the Day School and give them a cross, too.
- We will offer Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services. Our hope is that Holy Communion can be offered at the Maundy Thursday service. We will keep you informed. Good Friday will be a service of readings and reflection as Tenebrae brings our focus onto the shadows the crucifixion casts on the Christian Community. At the conclusion of the Maundy Thursday service, the altar will be stripped and the central cross draped in black. On Easter morning all those items will have been put back in place. We will not have a procession of bringing those items back into the worship space. The cross will remain draped in black and removed during the opening hymn as the Christian World celebrates the Lord’s victory over death.
- Easter Sunday, we will offer three worship services: 8:30, 9:45, and 11:00 a.m. We have no overflow possibilities and we will not have the shuttle service this year, so be sure to sign up. Three services will help us allow as many people as possible to come to Easter Worship. Each service will be formulated to last 45 minutes which will allow time between services for cleaning. There will be NO Sunday School on Easter Sunday.
- We will try to keep as many of our Lenten traditions as is possible. Please note that some things will change due to covid concerns and protocols. We will offer the three services on Easter because we have seating limitations in the LMR. Thank you for your understanding.
- If our numbers continue to grow in worship attendance during February and March, we will consider having three services to accommodate those persons wanting to attend in-person worship. This decision to go to three services has not been made yet. This choice will be driven by our numbers. Each service in the LMR can hold 125 persons.
- Ushers are needed every Sunday and we are thankful for them. Please keep an eye inside the LMR to assist people will finding seating. This is especially important when we have visitors unfamiliar with our building and the LMR.
- We are needing some of our youth to lend your service to the church and volunteer to acolyte. It’s important to offer this service to God through the church. The light of Christ is essential for worship. Please let David know if you have a willingness to serve in this capacity. I look forward to being with you in worship.