President's Message

He (Jesus) said to them "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all you soul, and with all your mind.  This is the greatest and most important command.  The second is like it:  Love your neighbor as yourself."

Matthew 22:37-39

June 2020

Greetings to all!  I hope this article finds you all safe and healthy as we all continue to navigate these days of isolation and ever-changing regulations and guidelines for living with COVID-19 among us.

On Tuesday, May 19th, the council met via Zoom to discuss the reopening plan for St. Paul’s.  We have a beautiful pavilion that (10) of us could safely social distance, and we could bring our chairs from home and clean up after ourselves, all while staying in the guidelines of Dr. Calvin Ball, our Howard County Executive.  That’s all we would do, (10) people in the pavilion listening to the weekly Bible Verses and Sermon.  (Since I started typing this article, the numbers have changed to 250 people outside with social distancing.)  The council was unanimous in waiting to reopen until Phase 2 of the State/County guidelines.

COVID-19 has so many unknown variables.  I do know that COVID-19 is an illness caused by a virus that can spread from person to person.  The virus that causes COVID-19 is a new coronavirus that has spread throughout the world.  COVID-19 symptoms can range from mild (or no symptoms) to severe illness.   Since I’ve begun typing this article, I’ve learned that it’s unlikely that you can get the virus from contact surfaces. 

I stopped spraying our mail and Amazon packages with Lysol weeks ago, so that is good to know.  With this new information, I have more questions.  Does this mean that the insurance company will change its guidelines for reopening?  If not, we will need to set up several teams of seven or more people to clean and sanitize surfaces before, between, and after services.  Are you willing to be one of these people? Would you want the ability to worship in the pavilion if we are just gathering to hear the gospel and the sermon?  We could see each other through our masks. Get out of our houses for a little while, but worship will not include communion, unison prayer, sharing peace, and we would have to social distance. The Governor even stated that it is “safer” to reopen, but “not safe.”  Just because “we can,” should we?

The council will meet on Tuesday, June 2nd, to discuss our reopening schedule. Services and groups will continue to meet on Zoom for the time being.   We will keep the congregation updated with any changes.

Please feel free to reach out to me, anyone on the council, or our Pastors with any questions or concerns you may have.



Julie Smith

President's Message

In the time of COVID-19