Letter From Pastor Luther - July 3rd, 2020

Love Intentionally

Love Inclusively

Love Universally

Love Completely

Love Everyone

Love Better!

July 3, 2020 (Week 17)

Sisters and brothers in Christ, Shalom!

            By the grace of God, we are continuing to minister to God’s people all over the world.

            The Foyer de l’Esperance in Yaoundé, Cameroon is set to re-open next week, and that’s exciting news because so many girls have simply dropped out of sight.  Hopefully, we’ll be able to reconnect soon. 

            Clean up efforts and re-building are beginning in the Piyali area after the terrible flooding that happened after the torrential storm that took place a few weeks ago.  Hopefully, the children in school there will be gathered together and safe once again.

            Here in Poway, we are working toward an August 2nd opening.  We discussed it at an Executive gathering yesterday, and we believe that we are going to be able to be in compliance with all the state regulations by that time.  That said, those regulations continue to evolve (the latest iteration for churches was published July 1), and slight tweaking will undoubtedly be required.  What the final result will be is as yet unclear, but there are a couple of things that I want to highlight now, so you can begin to plan appropriately for yourself and you family.

          People who have high risk preconditions will be asked to consider not coming at this time.                                                                                                                  

          People who wish to come to church will be required to “sign up” online.  This is to ensure that we can accommodate everyone we can.

          Temperatures will be taken at the door, and attendees will be asked a number of questions to ensure that no one is potentially presenting as having the virus.

          Face masks will be required at all times, with a limited number of exceptions, for little ones and for those with applicable medical conditions.                                                                                                                        

          Physical distancing will be maintained at all times, while entering and exiting the church and grounds, as well as during worship. 

          There will be no live singing or communal praying aloud during the services.  We shall have recordings of our musicians, of course.

          The elements for the Eucharist will be available on your chairs as you arrive, having been placed there by a person wearing gloves, a mask, and exercising appropriate protocols.

            This isn’t an exhaustive list of all the things that have to be done, but it gives you a sense of the logistical challenges before us, and the extent to which this is going to be really different.  More information will come from our church council in due course.  With all of these steps we are trying to do three things:  1) ensure the safety and well being of all our members and staff; 2) comply with all state and county guidelines that pertain to the pandemic; and, 3) satisfy the requirements of our insurance company to avoid potential liability.

            And despite all of that, we look forward to beginning to get back together again!

            Additionally, our executive and council continues to work on a proactive strategy to help us “love better;” empowering us to become an ever more welcoming community, that reaches out to all of God’s children, promoting universality of welcome, and utter inclusivity, where no one ever feels excluded or marginalized in this house of God. 

            And so, despite things not yet being anywhere close to normal, there are things to celebrate!  God is at work in the world!  God is at work at ILC!  God is at work in all of us!

            A reminder:  All of our online activities are found on our website, (www.godamong.us) and can be accessed on a link there that says “ILC Online Activities.”  I hope you’ll go there to find links to worship, Bible Study, devotions, etc., etc.  Please do join us.

            Stay well sisters and brothers.  Be safe.  And by the way, please read your Bibles!

            Pr. Luther

- After worship, around 11 am, Darrell and Nancy Datte host our after worship coffee/donut fellowship time (BYOC/D) on Zoom, and look forward to welcoming everyone in our community. Please think about joining in and saying hi to your brothers and sisters. That gathering can be found here: