June 11, 2021
Grace Lutheran Church has resumed indoor in-person worship. Out of an abundance of caution, we continue to observe some pandemic precautions:
• Please use the entrance on Main Street, unless you have need of the access ramp.
• Please wear a mask, and use hand sanitizer at the door.
• Worshippers must abide by physical distancing, and will be seated and dismissed at the direction of the ushers.
• As of June 6, the hymnals are back and we ARE singing again!
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Pastor Samantha or Council President Janene George.
One other thing - we need you! If we are to remain open for in person worship, we need volunteers to sign up to be ushers and lectors for these services. Please contact the office directly if you can do this. Thank you!!!
May 23, 2021
At the May monthly meeting, the GLC church council met to discuss matters affecting this congregation. Among other things, we decided to move towards allowing congregational singing at in-person worship services, beginning in June. We agreed that we would continue to observe the now-standard precautions of wearing masks, physical distancing, etc. Shortly after the meeting, the news was bursting with updates from the CDC regarding changes to the Covid guidelines for indoor gatherings and mask-wearing. The good news is that the number of people being vaccinated is going up significantly; thus the CDC has announced that people who are fully vaccinated do not need to wear masks indoors.
This is great news, however, we need to remember to take all of our cherished members into consideration and do what is best for ALL of us as God’s people gathered together as one. We are all in this together, and we want everyone to feel that we are taking each other’s feelings and concerns into consideration during these difficult decisions. Out of an abundance of caution (and because we don’t feel we should be requiring people to show proof of vaccination by “carding them”), we are still going to require masks during our in-person worship services at least through June. Leadership (as they have been since the start of the pandemic) will reassess the situation again, discuss it at our next Council meeting, and decide how to proceed as we see fit.
WE ARE GETTING THERE...I would kindly ask everyone to continue to be patient with us so we can all do the RIGHT thing for everyone at the RIGHT time. Thank you for your understanding, and as always, if you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding this or any other matter, please reach out to either myself or Pastor Samantha.
God bless you all, and stay safe,
Council President Janene George
May 2, 2021
After after prayerful consideration, Grace Lutheran leadership and staff have determined GLC will open to indoor in-person worship in May, pending any late developments such as a surge in new cases of Covid-19. The first in-person indoor date will be May 2 at 10:30 am. Just as when we had in-person worship last Fall, there will be standard pandemic precautions, as follows:
· worshippers must register online in advance (see link in Grace Notes email)
· worshippers are asked to use the entrance on Main Street, unless they have need of the access ramp
· worshippers must be masked, and use hand sanitizer at the door
· worshippers must abide by physical distancing, and will be seated and dismissed at the direction of the ushers
The 9:00 am service will continue to be livestreamed to Grace’s YouTube channel, and available to watch at any time after that. We will not be having Holy Communion at these indoor services, at least initially. However, we do plan to have outdoor worship with Holy Communion on May 16 at 10:30 am, which is also the day of the annual meeting (after worship). As we did at the Easter service, there will be chairs available; however if you have a folding chair or camp chair, please bring it.
Pentecost is Sunday May 23, and as is traditional at Grace Lutheran it is also Confirmation Sunday. Those being confirmed that day are Luke Erdman and Jared Petre. To allow space for their families, the number of other worshippers that day may have to be limited. See the weekly Grace Notes email for the SIgnUp Genius links. The May in-person worship schedule is as follows:
May 2 – signup online to worship indoors at 10:30 am
May 9 – signup online to worship indoors at 10:30 am
May 16 – no signup required; outdoor worship at 10:30 am followed by Annual Meeting
May 23 – signup online to worship indoors at 10:30 am; numbers may be limited
May 30 – signup online to worship indoors at 10:30 am
March 22, 2021
At Easter, Jesus came out of the tomb and conquered death forever. We rejoice and celebrate his victory every year, no matter what. However, this year we hope to have an extra cause to rejoice on that day. We are pleased to announce that Grace will be celebrating a brief outdoor service of Holy Communion on Easter Sunday. On that day, there will be a full Easter worship service with music on the usual 9 am YouTube livestream. Weather permitting, at 10:30 am there will be a short service of Holy Communion held outside. For this service, please park in the front parking lot or on the street. Worship will take place in the rear parking lot (there will be cones and signs to direct you). Please wear a mask and refrain from personal contact (hugs or handshakes). When it is time for Holy Communion, you will come forward and take a small contained chalice from the table. The wafer is in one portion of the cup, and the grape juice or wine in the other. Return to your place, and when everyone has the elements we will commune together. If there is mild rain, we will still have this service – bring an umbrella and/or wear rain gear. If there are severe storms, there will be a drive-through distribution of consecrated communion elements at the back door. Either way, Grace Lutheran Church will celebrate Holy Communion on Easter Sunday for those who wish to partake.
We are also overjoyed to announce that at this outdoor Easter worship, four of Grace’s young people – Matthew Eck, Katie Fenstermaker, Jamie Spengler and Evelyn Summer – will receive their first Holy Communion. They (together with Aubrey Geder, whose family will be away that day) have attended four Zoom First Communion classes, taught by Pastor Mark Summer (retired) and moderated by Pastor Samantha. The classes have been great fun as well as educational, and we are grateful to these kids and their parents for their enthusiastic participation. We hope that before too long, GLC can resume full worship services indoors. When that happens, whenever it happens, these five will be given acolyte training and added to the schedule to serve in worship.
Lastly, the Worship Team and Church Council have been discussing when GLC will resume in-person worship in the building. If all goes well, we are aiming for Sunday May 2 at 10:30 am. These first in-person services will be like the ones we had in the fall: sign up in advance, wear a mask, distanced seating, and no singing. Look for more details in future Grace Notes emails and in the May newsletter, including information about Grace’s Spring Annual Meeting and Confirmation Sunday. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact Pastor Samantha, or Council President Janene George.
Bless you and stay safe,
+ Grace Lutheran Church Leadership and Staff
February 5, 2021
IMPORTANT! There is yet another scam going around, this time by text rather than email, pretending to be from Pastor Samantha. It says "I hope you are alright" and then asks you to get back to her as soon as possible. Please do not respond. It's not from her, and the number was reported to the FTC.
First Communion If your child has been baptized and is in third grade, it is the practice at Grace Lutheran for them to attend First Communion instruction prior to receiving the Lord's Supper for the first time. Parents with children in this age group, keep an eye out for a letter that was recently mailed out. If you don't get a letter (or want more information) call or email Pastor Samantha.
Reminder: Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 17. On that day, Pastor Samantha will offer Imposition of Ashes in the front parking lot from 12 - 1 pm, and again from 5 - 6 pm. This will be a drive-through process, and Pastor will be wearing a mask, face shield, and gloves. If you choose to come by during this time, you and anyone with you must wear a mask as well. At 7 pm, there will be a livestream Ash Wednesday service on the Grace YouTube channel.
January 29, 2021
Today: Grace Food Cupboard Give-Away, January 29 from 2:30 to 4 pm. ALL are welcome to come to the Cupboard.
Coming Soon: Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 17. On that day, Pastor Samantha will offer Imposition of Ashes in the front parking lot from 12 - 1 pm, and again from 5 - 6 pm. This will be a drive-through process, and Pastor will be wearing a mask, face shield, and gloves. If you choose to come by during this time, you and anyone with you must wear a mask as well. At 7 pm, there will be a livestream Ash Wednesday service on the Grace YouTube channel.
Sponsors Wanted: Grace’s online services have helped all of us, and we are so grateful to everyone who helped to make them possible. From the positive response, we hope they continue after quarantine has ended. However, there are additional monthly expenses associated with livestreaming, such as licensing fees and increased bandwidth. So we have added an option to sponsor the Sunday online services. There can be up to two sponsors per week, at a cost of $25 per sponsor. Sign up online at www.signupgenius.com/go/10c054eabaa23a0f58-online Thank you!
Volunteers Wanted: After many years of service, current board members President Dale Eck, Secretary Joanne Andrews, and Manager Dennis Andrews have announced their retirement. According to the bylaws of the Grace Lutheran/Solomon’s United Church of Christ Cemetery Association, a minimum of three members from Grace and three members from Solomon's shall serve to oversee the work of the cemetery. If you are a member of Grace, please consider serving as a member of the Cemetery Board. For more information, Dale Eck can be contacted at 610-966-3479, or call the Solomon's church office (610-966-3086). Thank you!
January 22, 2021
Next week we host our Grace Food Cupboard Give-Away, January 26 and 29 from 2:30 to 4 pm each day. ALL are welcome to come to the Cupboard.
For the foreseeable future, there will be live worship every Sunday morning at 9 am on the Grace Lutheran Church YouTube channel. Those viewing then can leave comments, prayer requests, or simply see who else is in worship. If you can't tune in at 9 am for the live service, a recording will be available afterward under Videos (change the drop-down selection from "Uploads" to "Past Live Streams"). If you do watch live, we encourage you to say hello, and share the peace with your fellow worshippers in the comments section.
Looking ahead: Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 17. On that day, Pastor Samantha will offer Imposition of Ashes in the front parking lot from 12 - 1 pm, and again from 5 - 6 pm. This will be a drive-through process, and Pastor will be wearing a mask, face shield, and gloves. If you choose to come by during this time, you and anyone with you must wear a mask as well. At 7 pm, there will be a livestream Ash Wednesday service on the Grace YouTube channel.
Midweek Lenten Services: Grace will livestream a midweek service each Wednesday at 7 pm during Lent (except for Holy Week). We will alternate between Holden Evening Prayer and a Service of the Word. For each, there will be a 2-person reader’s theatre drama in place of a sermon. Thank you in advance to Brenda Early, Georgie Graybill, and those volunteering as readers. We also hope to have Pr. Frank Schaeffer from Solomon’s UCC to join us on some of these Wednesdays.
2/24 – Service of the Word
3/3 – Holden Evening Prayer
3/10 – Service of the Word
3/17 – Holden Evening Prayer
3/24 – Service of the Word
January 8, 2021
Our Monthly Free Community Meal is Friday January 8! Come by any time from 4:30 - 6:30 pm that evening to pick up January's meal, which will feature pork and sauerkraut. Just drive around to the rear Fellowship Hall doors, and get your meal(s) to go. Thank you to all of this month's volunteers!
On Sunday January 10, we celebrate Epiphany at Grace. There will be a livestreamed service with special music at 9 am; as always, a bulletin for this service is posted at gracemacungie.org/Bulletins.htm. For the foreseeable future, there will be live worship every Sunday morning at 9 am on the Grace Lutheran Church YouTube channel. Those viewing then can leave comments, prayer requests, or simply see who else is in worship. If you can't tune in at 9 am for the live service, a recording will be available afterward under Videos (change the drop-down selection from "Uploads" to "Past Live Streams"). If you do watch live, we encourage you to say hello, and share the peace with your fellow worshippers in the comments section.
January 1, 2021
We are still closed for in person worship, but continue our livestream every Sunday at 9 am on our YouTube Channel. As we begin another year, all of us at Grace Lutheran wish you the very best for a happy healthy 2021. Our continued prayers that you stay well, and that we can gather safely in person again soon. God bless you!