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A Pastoral Message from Bishop Egensteiner on COVID-19

[3.20.20]

“So do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will bring worries of its own.
Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
Jesus, as quoted in Matthew 6


I’m getting a few communications about COVID-19 (!). Maybe you are, too(!!). And by all reports, we haven’t seen the worst of it yet. THERE’S some comforting news!!! As a result of this, life is changing dramatically day by day. It is risky to be with other people, even to go out of the house. I’ve seen this admonition on the news and on roadside signs: Stay Home!


So just when we need to be together as God’s people, and perhaps into the holiest days of our calendar (Holy Week and Easter), one of the riskiest things we can do is… be together.


Into the midst of our anxiety, as I, your bishop, hope and pray the situation changes more quickly than predicted (But I’m not holding my breath.), Jesus says, “Just worry for today.” But what if we can’t go to church on Easter?! “Just worry for today.”


Or not. I have heard many of our pastors repeating this simple prayer: Faith, not fear. They are not suggesting that we behave recklessly. We, as God’s household of faith, are reminding one another to take necessary precautions but not to panic. This very same Jesus who says we ought to take our worries one day at a time also overcomes death and all the forces opposed to God’s people and says, “I am with you always, until the end of time.”


Maybe at this midpoint of Lent it’s not too late to give up being consumed by worry and fear. Because if our faith tells us anything, it tells us we are held in the hands of a loving God.
This is what I see lived out among all of you, dear siblings. Flexibility and trust. Faith, not fear. Finding ways to be together without… well, you know, being together.
 

So, stay in the house(hold)!
Stay close to one another.
BE the Body of Christ that you are.
Lean on Jesus.
It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming!

 

In Christ,
+Bishop Egensteiner

 

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