You heard that right – the church building is open for worship beginning this month! The reason is that we are following the recommendations of the CDC and our state and local authorities. With an increase in the number of people receiving Covid vaccines, along with a decrease in cases, the federal, state, and county governments are loosening the safety precautions that we have had in place for over a year. The data shows that the strict precautions are no longer needed.
Because of that, we are very happy to invite everyone to come back to in-person worship services at St. Vincent beginning June 6! For those not yet ready to return to in-person attendance, we will also be live streaming our services on facebook as we have been doing since March 2020.
As you plan your attendance, here are some things you will want to know:
(1) We will not need to observe social distancing in the sanctuary – everyone sit where you feel comfortable. But, we do ask that everyone try to be aware of your own and other people's level of comfort. Please observe everyone's comfort zones and make sure any physical contact is mutual.
(2) Please observe that the first two pews are roped off on the piano side of the sanctuary and there is a barrier in place as a precaution for our performing musicians.
(3) For your use, we have provided supplies of hand sanitizer and wipes just inside the ramp entrance. There are also face masks for both adults and children if you need one*. And on the back table of the Sanctuary, you will find individual packs of tissues, hand sanitizer gel packs, and copies of the bulletin for you to pick up. On June 6, you will also find the pre-filled communion cups there with napkins for your use.
* In regards to masks – if you are fully vaccinated, masks are no longer required anywhere on the church grounds, both outside and inside. For those who are not fully vaccinated, masks are requested until the state reaches a 70% vaccination rate for adults. While singing, it is recommended that we all wear a mask. Some people, even if fully vaccinated, may prefer to wear a mask as a precaution and we respect that decision.
4) There will be no hymnals or Bibles in the pews throughout the summer months. The words to the hymns will be included in the bulletins.
(5) In order to limit the need for cleaning throughout the summer, we are avoiding using the downstairs.
I am looking forward to this new phase in our church life together!
Reverend Susan Hanson has been serving churches since December 19, 1993, when she delivered her first sermon to her first congregation. Since then, Pastor Susan has served in 12 different settings of churches as an interim pastor and to nursing homes as a chaplain, primarily helping to heal hurting congregations and institutions so they could recover and start anew. Reverend Hanson came to St. Vincent UCC in 2013 - her lucky number 13, as she says - and has been with us ever since. How lucky we are because on Sunday, April 8, 2018, Pastor Susan was officially installed by the PA Southeast Conference of the UCC as St. Vincent UCC’s permanent pastor!
Susan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development from Florida State University; a Master of Divinity from Lancaster Theological Seminary; and a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling from Moravian Theological Seminary. She was ordained in her home church, St. John’s UCC in Lansdale, PA, on January 9, 1994.
Susan and her husband, the Reverend Doug Hanson, pastor of St. Peter’s Pikeland UCC, live in Chester Springs. They have a daughter and son-in-law who live in Alabama with Pastor Susan’s two grandchildren, a daughter and a son who live locally, and a Golden Doodle. In addition to meeting new people, Pastor Susan enjoys reading a good book, taking walks in nature, and visiting with family and friends.
In her Statement on Ministry, Reverend Hanson says that “a pastor assists the congregation in living out our call to be the heart and hands and voice of God here on earth in our own particular time and place. We can be assured that all of God’s hopes and dreams for us will be realized when we allow God’s Spirit to work within our own lives, and through us, to help others as we seek to do God’s will in the world. Together, we celebrate that when good people seek to make a positive difference in the world, it is there that real ministry happens.”
Feel free to contact Pastor Susan via email at email@example.com or by cell phone at 610.393.6971.
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