When we’ve hit our limit on alone-time. When we’ve run out of coffee. When we’ve realized that ZOOM calls just don’t cut it. When we can’t remember how many days have passed since we’ve been physically touched by another human being. (I’m ‘this close’ to adopting a shelter dog but who will walk that duffer if I get sick?)
The moment I broke was yesterday when I went old school and watched First Presbyterian Church Charlotte on Channel 64 at 11 am. Familiar faces led us in familiar words and I ugly-cried through the whole thing. First Pres Charlotte (who partnered with First United Pres Charlotte) is one of the few churches able to afford their own television presentation every week. Thanks be to God.
All our congregational leaders are straining to offer online worship, Bible studies, and business meetings. One of our churches is planning what will essentially be a drive through congregational meeting to elect a new pastor. Several are inviting members to grab whatever juice and cracker they can find for online communion together. Another church I love invites everyone to light a candle – each in their own space – during YouTube worship.
Sooner or later, we will burst into tears over this new normal. New Normal Times are often the points when we weep because a loved one is gone forever or the pain we feel is too much to bear.
And those ugly-cry moments are sacred. They mark the points when we realize we need something Bigger. We need each other. We need something Holy. We need eternal hope.
To all who offer eternal hope today – thank you. We need you. Keep at it.
This post is dedicated to all my colleagues who keep things going during these long weeks. Please make an online donation or write and mail a check to any church comforting those who weep today. Image of 11am worship with First Presbyterian Church and First United Presbyterian Church on the Fourth Sunday in Lent.