I am grateful for all the ways we have been able to express ourselves in worship in the past year. We’ve had monthly outdoor worship to celebrate communion together. We learned new ways to connect in worship through our online offerings. Christmas Eve was a different experience, both outdoors and online. What an opportunity to share so many gifts of the church in new and exciting ways.
Although we can each worship God individually through prayer and meditation and by seeing the love of God in others, we all know that worship as a community experience is not what it was. There are elements of our combined worship that we long for. Thoughts of “Can’t we get back to the way it was?” creep into our minds.
We are learning that some things can indeed come back to the way they were, but others may be forever changed in ways we are just beginning to see. I wonder if both perspectives might help us to see worship at Mountain View as both new beginnings (restarts) and as opportunities (new ways).
Our music ensembles are once again able to meet safely in small groups. Our online offerings are continuing to grow in content, value, and quality. Our worship space is undergoing carefully considered changes for its ease of use and for its longevity into the future.
How are you engaged in all of this? Have you had the opportunity to reach out to others in our congregation in new ways? Are you keeping up with our Friday email and participating in events as you can?
Mountain View has for years been a beacon in the United Methodist community and that shall continue. The church’s financial stability speaks to your desire to keep that light alive and bright. And indeed the beacon will continue to shine, with your continued involvement and support of each other and involvement in the work of the church.
As I look ahead at the planning we have done for the upcoming many months, I am excited! We’ve had a wonderful look at the religions of the world and how they celebrate light during this Epiphany season. In Lent we will look at the signs and symbols through which we might see Jesus in our lives and the world. Our Holy Week offerings will be unique and inspired, culminating in both online and outdoor worship services.
The church looks forward to our Youth Sunday service in the beginning of May as we celebrate how the youth and children of our church have continued to be engaged and inspired with Larissa and each other. This service will kick off our “I am” series, based on Jesus’ statements, such as “I am the bread life”, and ‘the light of the world”, “the true vine” and “the Good Shepherd.”
Summer will begin more frequent outdoor worship services which will be full worship with singers and bells and instruments, in addition to our monthly communion worship services. During the summer we will take a close look at the book of Psalms, and see the many ways that music plays a part in highlighting the words of the psalms and how the texts have inspired awesome forms of worship in art, literature, liturgy, and music.
What great opportunities for you to be involved in the work of the church! As the world begins to see a hopeful future as we navigate the pandemic, I pray you will see Mountain View as part of that hope and as a beacon of our bright future. I encourage you to stay involved and increase your involvement in the workings of the church. All the ministries of the church exist for you to become closer to God and to see God’s handiwork in the world.
You are welcome to join us in our music and worship offerings! I look forward to your continued participation in church music and ministries, as we all look forward to the year ahead at Mountain View!