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Hello People of St. Marys’ 

Grace and peace to you. 
Like many of you, the synod office has been following closely the updates from our Provincial and Canadian Health Authorities in regards to the COVID-19 known as the Corona Virus. Our hope is to make informed decisions about how we publicly practise our faith as a worshipping community in Christ. What is important is that we remain calm, stay informed and make the changes we need to make in order to reduce risk of infection and most especially for the most vulnerable people of our community. Sharleen Thompson has been in conversation with both SIRC and with Fire Chief Stephanie Dunlop to develop a communication link in order to get good and timely information out to the people of Metchosin and within St. Marys’. During this time you are encouraged to check the Diocese of BC website for updates.
Here are some decisions made in conversation with the synod office for the time being. I must stress that these are temporary changes.
  1. As of today, we have decided to go ahead with the Metchosin Challenge this evening but the final three weeks of the Metchosin Challenge series have been cancelled.
  2. Messy Church has been cancelled for this Friday.
  3. Sunday worship will happen as scheduled. The sermon for the week will be posted to the website by Tuesday. 
  4. We will practise sharing the peace by placing our hand over our heart, looking the other in the eyes and saying the words “peace be with you”. (It worked well last week)
  5. We will be suspending the use of the common cup. Communion with only the bread is receiving the full sacrament. I will be washing my hands with soap and water right before serving. Hand Sanitizer is avaliable in the worship space.
  6. The offering plate will not be passed, it will be situated on a table in our worship space. During the time of the offering, after the peace, you may place your offering in the plate before preparing for the Eucharist. 
  7. All hymnals and prayer books will be wiped before the service but next week the entire service will be in the bulletin.
  8. We will suspend coffee service until further notice after worship. However feel at ease to continue to spend time talking to one another, sharing your stories, your lives, your news in fellowship. This is important time. 
  9. If anyone is experiencing symptoms it is strongly recommended that they stay home consult with Island Health by phoning 250-388-2200 or dialing 811. If anyone in the congregation is feeling isolated or afraid in their home, please contact pastor Aneeta for support. 
Worship is central to our life of faith as Christians. God is with us in the midst of all things. In these anxious times we still need to breathe, laugh, and offer care and compassion to one another. This too shall pass and we are a community who looks out for one another and we are promised that we are never alone. We remember that the Peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. 
If you require pastoral care or assistance please do not hesitate to call me at 250-812-5965 
In Christ, 
Pastor Aneeta +