Worship – Teaching – Fellowship – Service – Outreach
‘Striving to live the Christian Life in today’s world.’
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We continue to find ourselves in the midst of extraordinary times. There is no question that the current climate of concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 continues to not only affect the church, but our congregation here at Calvin as well. And so, as per our previous congregational correspondence, the Session met this past Monday (Mar. 30th) to reassess our situation, and to determine next steps moving forward.
Given Nova Scotia’s declared state of emergency and the continued restrictions regarding gathering sizes intended to help reduce the risk of any COVID-19 transmission, the Session reached the following decisions:
- Regular Sunday worship services will be cancelled for the next 5 Sundays (Apr. 5th, 12th, 19th, 26th, and May 3rd).
- Special Holy Week services and events including Maundy Thursday’s evening service (Apr. 9th), Good Friday’s Cantata service (Apr. 10th), and Easter Sunday’s breakfast (Apr. 12th before worship) have been cancelled.
- Meetings of the Mission & Outreach Team, LFG Bridge dates, the Ladies Fellowship, and the Ladies Fellowship’s Spring Tea & Sale have been cancelled.
- The Serving of Holy Communion will continue to be postponed until our next regular service of Communion on Sun. June 7th.
- In light of school closures and child care needs, regular office hours at the church will be suspended to allow Rev. Koslowski to work from home as needed until May 4th. Those needing to contact Rev. Koslowski are asked to please contact him via his cell phone at 902-402-6747.
- Various committees/groups are encouraged to work as possible, via phone, conference calls, video chat, etc., until May 4h, 2020.
Over the next several weeks the Session will continue to monitor the situation, and to reassess whether or not services can or should resume on May 10th. The Session has set May 1st as its proposed deadline for making such decisions, and will continue to keep the congregation informed as we seek to move forward together.
Though our hope is to be in a position to resume worshipping together on May 10th, we fully expect that this unprecedented situation may yet extend beyond even that.
And so, in the interim please note that:
- New recorded worship services will continue to be available each week during service cancellations (Our hope is to be able to offer video posts, so please be patient with us and be sure to visit www.calvinhalifax.ca and be sure to click on the link for “Worship services”)
- Daily Devotions will be posted to the church website each day throughout Holy Week (Apr. 6th-10th)
- A new interactive on-line bible study will be offered, with a target start date of Thurs. Apr. 16th. (Our hope is to be able to offer this study, beginning with 40 minute sessions, via Zoom video conferencing. It’s simple, stable, and easy to use. All you would need to take part is access to smart phone (i.e. iPhone, Android, etc.), an iPad or tablet (with video and sound available), or access to a laptop or desktop computer with working camera and video available. Please watch for further details. If you have questions about Zoom, please visit https://zoom.us.)
As we continue through this time of social distancing, the Session would like to continue to encourage the congregation to join them in reaching out to each other by telephone, email, text and/or other social media means for the sake of checking in with others, to make sure others are okay, and to remind each other of God’s presence and love that connects us as a church in a time when many might feel isolated.
Despite many of our regular routines having been interrupted, and though it may be some time before we are able to be physically together in community, we are still called to be the body of Christ in the world.
And perhaps that means taking the time to pray, and to think over, and to maybe even re-imagine how we will BE the church going forward. This may be a time of learning together how to do things differently – everything from how we ‘meet’, to how we worship, to how we live and support each other as community.
I know that can be scary for many of us. Moving to different ways of doing things – and having to learn how to even make those ways work – can be daunting. Growth can be challenging. But I pray, that together, we’ll continue to look to God for guidance, and for courage, and for His wisdom to show us the way forward…and graciousness to bend together into whatever new shape our ministry will be called to take in these times and into what lies ahead.
The Session would like to thank those who have taken the time to remember and to give in support of the still ongoing work here at Calvin. If you are able, ways you can give to help support the life and ministry of the church in this time include:
- Post dated offerings: Can be left at the Church, placed through the Letter slot, or mailed to the church at 3311 Ashburn Ave, Halifax, NS B3L 4C3
- Emailed using your Banks interac e-transfer: Using your Banking On-line, most banks provide this service free. Email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Through our web site using credit card or paypal: Go to www.calvinhalifax.ca and click on Stewardship, then scroll down to DONATE NOW. Follow directions. Your receipt will be emailed to you at the time, and will come from Canada Helps-not Calvin. (A 4% fee will be charged to Calvin.)
- PAR: Pre Authorized Donations is the best method of donating. Your donation is sent from your bank account to Calvin monthly whether you are in church or not- and no filling out weekly envelopes needed. Information available in PAR Brochures on table in Narthex, or from our web site www.calvinhalifax.ca Click on Stewardship.
- I pray God’s blessings on you in the days and weeks ahead. May you be safe. May you be healthy. And being blessed, may we find ways of being God’s blessing to others. Please continue to watch for further updates in the weeks ahead.
Rev. Michael Koslowski
Calvin Presbyterian Church
3311 Ashburn Ave., Halifax N.S.
(o) 902-455-7435 (c) 902-402-6747