Greetings, everyone, and welcome to a new church year. I am happy and excited to be with you for another year of ministry, even as our world faces new and bigger challenges and grief seems to remain ever-present.

You have probably heard by now that the Board, upon recommendation from the Re-Opening Task Force, has decided to postpone the Re-Opening/Homecoming celebration we had hoped to have on September 12th. I know that this news is not simply disappointing but is heartbreaking as well. Many of you have shared that you are experiencing a range of emotions with this newest, and worst yet, spike of COVID-19 in Houston, from anger that things didn’t have to get this bad, to disappointment, to fatigue. I am with you and share your grief.

And so, this is probably a good time to remind you that we know how to do this now, as much as we might not want to, and that the staff, the Lay Pastoral Ministry Team, and myself, are all here for you as needed. Please reach out. We are here to provide the comfort and support you need to care for your spiritual lives and to guide you toward any resources you may need beyond our areas of expertise.

And rest assured, that we are working hard to keep this congregation connected and vibrant, even as we keep each other and our wider community safer by keeping the buildings closed for a little while longer. A sub-team of the Board has been tasked with working on congregational connections and the membership committee has been working hard at finding a membership coordinator while our former and new music directors have been working to transition us to live streaming directly from the Sanctuary, a move that will enable us to share some live music with you even before the buildings are open.

In other words, even amongst the grief, there is hope. We will be together again, or for some of us, for the first time, and we will celebrate when the time is right.

With Love,

Rev. Michelle