January 8, 2021
Dear St. Andrew’s Family,
As you know, our Session voted in December to pause our In-Person Worship Services with a target return date of January 10. We met again this last Tuesday and again voted unanimously to continue our pause on In-Person Worship with a new target date of January 31. As Arizona became the leader of COVID cases in the world, we felt an extra couple of weeks of online-only was the right thing to do.
I know some of you will applaud this action and I know others will be sad and frustrated. I totally understand both sides. Know that these decisions are not made lightly. In fact, these decisions are made with a great deal of prayer, discussion, and discernment for where God is leading our community. Our hope is that we will be back in person soon! Thank you for your patience, your love, and prayers for the church, the front-line hospital workers, and our community.
We are all longing for connection points, so this next week we will be re-instituting our Wednesday Drive-Up Check-In on our NE Campus near the Church Offices from 9:30 am – 11:00 am. We would love to see you, chat, and pray for you! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me and I would love to chat. May God bless you and may He continue to lead us as a church and grow us more into His likeness every day.
Grace and Peace,
Pastor Mat Grover
December 17, 2020
Dear St. Andrew’s Family,
Last March the Session of St. Andrew’s decided, in the interests of health and well-being of all of our members, friends, and community, to suspend all in-person worship and continue with online services only. Since that time, the Session has continued to monitor protocols and possible safety measures and in October voted to resume in-person worship under certain guidelines and subject to specific protocols and procedures. The Session has continued to meet bi-weekly and sometimes weekly to discuss all of that information and any changes that have occurred.
Session has had concerns over general public health and safety, not only for our congregation but our community at large. Sparked by Amphitheater School District’s decision to not return to in-person schooling after their Winter break and Pima County’s letter issued on December 10, 2020, which recommended staying home as much as possible to help reduce the spread of the COVID-19, the Session has made the difficult decision to once again suspend In-Person worship. This will be effective this Sunday, December 20, through January 3, with a targeted return date of January 10. All services, including scheduled Christmas Eve services, will be online only.
The Session has struggled for weeks with the tension of balancing the needs of the congregation during this Advent season and protecting the health and well-being of our community. We are confident in the Lord’s faithfulness to meet each of us at this time.
HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?
We are here to come alongside you with Christ’s compassion and grace so that we may all experience His transforming love and healing as we go through this together. If you would like someone to pray with you over the phone and offer encouragement or if you need additional resources over these next few weeks, please reach out so we can support you. To share a prayer or care request with us click here. Our team is standing by to pray for you and support you.
IF YOU NEED HELP
This is a stressful season and we want to be available to bring comfort and offer encouragement as we travel this journey together. Email email@example.com with prayer requests or care requests, including requests for assistance if you are self-isolating.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Pray for our church family, community, and world that God will bring good out of this crisis. Pray for wisdom for our leaders as they make important decisions on how best to prevent the spread of this virus. Pray that we can come together as a country during this crisis.
Keep in touch with each other through all the various means of communication available to us. Again, this is a rapidly changing crisis so please check our website frequently to stay aware of the needs of our congregation. Although we may be somewhat physically isolated from each other during the next few weeks, there is no reason why we cannot remain connected and encourage one another.
Giving Opportunities – Our staff is still working, our mission partners are still depending on us, and our bills still need to be paid. Please be diligent about keeping up with your regular giving. Click here to give online or you can mail your contribution to the church at 7650 N Paseo del Norte, Tucson, AZ 85704. In addition, new needs may arise which we may respond to as people in our community and world are affected by this pandemic.
We love you, are praying for you, and are available if you need us. Take special care of each other, your loved ones, and neighbors, and know that the “God of all peace” is with you and will never abandon you. May you feel the presence of God’s joy in this Advent season. It is especially during times like this that we can let our light shine and bring comfort and love to others. Keep in touch and, together with God’s grace, we will weather this storm and come out of it a stronger community! We are the church, let’s continue to be the church wherever we are, acting out of love and God’s peace, which passes all understanding.
Grace and Peace,
The Session of St. Andrews