Beloved in the Lord,
It is with a heavy heart that I write to you today. After much prayer, investigation, and discussion with the Elders we have decided that the best course of action for Resurrection at this point would be to fully suspend in person worship services. Suspension of services will go into effect immediately with the prospective end date being the Sunday of Pentecost (May 31st) or earlier depending on when the restrictions are lifted. The reason for the May 31st target date is that it gives us plenty of time to see the course that this pandemic will take and allow us to look forward to a day where we can celebrate when the restrictions are lifted and join together once again as a congregation.
During this time, all of our services will be recorded and posted on the church’s YouTube channel, including Palm Sunday, Holy Week, and Easter Sunday. I will be suspending shut-in visits as well but will continue to reach out by phone and by sending out devotional resources by either email or regular mail to help feed the sheep God’s Word during this time. If anyone wishes to have in-person pastoral counsel or has a hunger and thirst for the body and blood of Christ in Holy Communion please contact me (call, email, or text) and we will see about setting up an appointment for meeting at the church. I will continue to record Matins prayer services and other devotional resources that will be posted online for people to listen to.
Just for reference, here are the links for watching and listening online, as well as my cell phone number:
- YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkMElsXgDXU2QcBmC4fVwRw
- Podbean: https://resurrectionfbg.podbean.com
- Pastor Buvinghausen’s cell # 832-878-4532
This was not an easy decision to reach and one that the Elders and I were very reluctant to make. However, given the seriousness of the Covid-19 and the fact that the majority of our members are in the high risk group of those who could contract the virus, this seems to be the best course of action to lower the risk for spreading the disease amongst our congregation and within our community. This is to comply with the reasonable recommendations from the Texas District and the guidelines laid out by the Attorney General of Texas under the current executive order from Governor Abbott. I know that we are all craving fellowship and communion with each other in the church yet these are extraordinary times and these measures might be overkill yet in this instance it is best to err on the side of caution.
On a hopeful note, when the restrictions are lifted and we can gather again as a full congregation, we would keep all the regular aspects for that particular Sunday in the church year the same, while emphasizing and focusing on the celebration and joy of the Resurrection of our Lord. On that day we would also have a full celebration with a meal and gathering after worship to celebrate the end of the restrictions being in place and the joy of being together as a congregation again.
Finally, I would ask that you join me in giving thanks to God for the thoughtful and fine Elders that He has placed here to serve at Resurrection. I would also ask that you continue to pray for me as I am praying for you. Pray also that God would grant us His mercy in bringing a swift end to this pandemic. God’s peace be with you all.
Pastor Garrett Buvinghausen
Resurrection Lutheran Church
1 Corinthians 2:1-2