Dear Beloved Friends and Family of Cal Heights UMC,
As you may already be aware, we are intending to re-open our church facility for in-person worship and small group gatherings. The last year has been exceedingly difficult due to the pandemic and we have been working hard to prepare our staff, volunteers, and facility to be both safe and inviting for you as we gather once again. The intended date of our first indoor, in-person worship gathering is this coming Pentecost, May 23rd. We are still awaiting some approvals from our Annual Conference which we anticipate will be given prior to the date we’ve chosen. I cannot tell you enough how excited I am to have the opportunity to gather once again in the Sanctuary to worship with you! It has been a long and tough year for all of us and the Spirit of God has been moving in and through Cal Heights UMC in our physical absence from one another.
Pentecost is an especially auspicious day for us to gather once again as t celebrates the ‘birth’ of the Body of Christ, the Church, as the Holy Spirit entered not only the Apostles (Jesus’ 12 disciples), but the entire congregation of believers. The day of Pentecost was that moment when God proclaimed to all Creation that ALL PERSONS were valued, loved, and would be used by God to change the world! This year, we have the opportunity to proclaim the same message to our community and the world. As a reconciling congregation, we not only invite, but we welcome and empower all persons to become and grow as disciples of Christ as together we journey to do God’s holy work of compassion and witness of God’s grace.
There are a few things that are exceedingly important to inform you as we prepare to re-open our building and move into this new and mysterious future in ministry together. First, EVERYTHING HAS CHANGED. The manner in which we will gather and worship is, by necessity, different than ever before as our responsibility towards one another’s safety and health must be foremost in our thoughts as we prepare for worship. The early church leader Paul wrote, “Love is the fulfillment of the law for love does no harm to one’s neighbor.” We believe at Cal Heights that it is vital to our witness of faith that we do everything we can to do no harm.
To this end, you may expect the following changes (and perhaps a few others) when you gather together once again: RSVP’s for worship, (see insert) socially distanced seating, assigned seating, hand sanitizer, temperature checks and questionnaires prior to entrance, limited participatory liturgy, no congregational singing, mask-wearing throughout the service, no physical bulletins, regular use of video screen to replace bulletins, usher escorts to and from pews, and, most likely, a line to enter. As I mentioned earlier--EVERYTHING HAS CHANGED. As time goes on and scientific guidelines allow us to safely adapt to less rigorous requirements, we will make appropriate changes. In the meantime, we will be vigilant in our safety protocols to do our best to keep everyone safe.
I hope to see you soon as we witness the re-birth of our church in the days to come. Blessings, and God be with you and all your family. Amen.
Pastor Douglas A Dickson
For us to safely re-open our worship experience at Cal Heights UMC, we need everyone to let us know you’re coming! Please R.S.V.P. for our re-opening celebration by clicking below and registering your anticipated attendance. We can’t wait to see you all there! Attendance is limited so register soon!
If you're unable to access the link you can call or email the office.
The Cal Heights Drama Club has been sharing the joys of musical theater with children ages 4-14 for over 10 years! We've moved to an online format due to COVID and are currently developing a new format, preparing kids for solos and soliloquy! The new format will allow kids to learn more about how to sing, act, and do a little choreography as they work with our director's to create an individualized experience and a group "variety show" later this Fall. Contact us for more information at PastorDoug@calheightsumc.org
Many have been expressing a desire to see and connect with people during this time of quarantine. We here at the church can provide a safe and sanitary place for people to gather in a socially-distanced atmosphere for groups under eight people. These groups would have the opportunity to explore areas of faith, history, scripture, and service as they meet on a regular basis for spiritual socializing and discussion. These small groups have been a hallmark of Weslyan churches from the very beginning of the Methodist movement and are so vitally important in today's isolated climate. Click on the button below to sign-up and then we'll help groups coordinate their meeting times and discussions.
Over the last couple months a small group of CHUMC leaders has been gathering online to discuss and discern the direction that God would have us move in ministry. We believe that God is still active in today's church and that God will guide us to meet the needs of our community as we pray, listen, and reflect together. WE CAN USE YOUR HELP!!!
You can help this group of people discern God's call for our congregation by sharing your thoughts and reflections on the following three questions:
1) Who are we (CHUMC) now? Not who have we been. Not what have we been good at. Who are we right now, today?
2) Who are our neighbors now? This is about who the people around us are--their needs, their likes and dislikes, their age and interests.
3) What is God calling us to do now? This is the most important question for us to move forward as a congregation. If God is calling us to meet the needs of our community and bring the grace of God to them through ministry, what will that look like?
Click on the link below to send us a note of your thoughts and reflections on these three questions. IT WILL REALLY HELP