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COVID-19 UPDATE: Watch/Listen to services here. All in-person worship services and activities are canceled or moving online. Please click here for the latest update. God bless!

Ministry Update - Continued Reopening - July 9th, 2020

To my brothers and sisters in Christ at Grace Chapel -

“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” ~ Deuteronomy 31:6 ~

Months ago, when our routines were flipped upside down, our “normals” seemed anything but, and when each day seemed more uncertain, we found new ways to care and support one another. We collected food to help families who need a little extra help. We found ourselves teaching from home, helping our children through their schools days, visits turned to phone calls and FaceTime. We found ourselves worshipping in our homes in front of a screen and joining in studying God’s word on Zoom. Life has been different, but God’s love, care, and encouragement for each and everyone of us has not. In every change that we have had to face head on, God’s promise is right there...“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” He has brought us this far and He will continue to guide our ways, calm our fears, be our strength when we are weak, and eternally be our Savior.

I want to thank each and everyone of you for your patience, understanding, flexibility, support, prayers, and willingness to serve over these last couple of months. For all of you that sang and helped lead worship while we walked through figuring out “online” worship, thank you for sharing your gifts. To those who helped clean and sanitize, thank you. To those who helped and continue to plan and lead in various fashions, thank you for your dedication. I simply thank all of you for being wonderful examples of Christ’s love!

I continue to be in communication with the Missouri District, our circuit pastors, and our Board of Elders to formulate and finalize plans that continue to allow us to worship together at Grace Chapel while following the guidelines set by St. Louis County officials and the guidelines suggested by the Missouri District. The plan that I outline below continues to be part fo our gradual “re-opening” plan that has the health and safety of our people as top priority. If you are not comfortable attending worship services at this time, please know that it is OK and I would encourage you to continue to join us for worship online. While the dates stated below are our target dates, they are subject to change if it is determined that it is not safe to return to worshipping together.

Phase Three (July 11/12 - August 22/23)

~ “In-person” worship continues. Worship services will be offered at 4pm Saturday evening, 8am Sunday morning, and 9:30am Sunday morning. 4pm Saturday evening and 8am Sunday morning will resume as the traditional/liturgical worship service and 9:30am will resume as the “Living Praise” service. We will continue to stream Sunday morning worship at 8am and 9:30am. Prayer requests, Grace Notes, and the 4pm/8am service folder are available for download at www.gracechapelstl.org.

~ Capacity limits have been raised to 50% of fire code capacity. With this increase, we are lifting the requirement of signing up for your preferred worship service.

~ Out of love and concern for everyone, we are asking that you wear a mask. Please also use the hand sanitizer located inside the main doors upon entering and exiting the building.

~ Please sit one family per pew. Pews have been roped off to allow proper social distancing.

~ Hymnals and pew bibles have been removed in order to aid in sanitation of the worship space. Service bulletins will be available on a stand near the entrance of the sanctuary. At the end of the service, please take the bulletins home with you. Please do not dispose of them in the church building.

~ Please refrain from greeting one another via personal contact, i.e. hugs and handshakes.

~ As “In-person” worship continues, Holy Communion will also continue to be offered during the worship service on the first, third, and fifth weekends. When attending worship, please follow Pastor Nate’s instructions regarding how we will celebrate the Lord’s Supper together. Precautions are being put in place in order to protect the health and wellbeing of those worshipping.

~ If you are not comfortable being in worship and desire to receive the Lord’s Supper, please arrange a time by emailing Pastor Nate directly (nruback@gracechapelstl.org), or by calling and leaving Pastor Nate a voicemail (314-868-3232 x213).

~ We will continue to gather online Sunday mornings at 11am for Sunday morning bible study and Summer Sunday School.

Phase Four (August 29/30 and following)

~ “In-person” worship services resume at 4pm Saturday evening, 8am Sunday morning, and 10:45am Sunday morning. 4pm Saturday evening and 8am Sunday morning will continue as the traditional/liturgical worship service and 10:45am will continue as the “Living Praise” service. We will continue to stream Sunday morning worship at 8am and 10:45am.

~ We will resume gathering “in-person” Sunday mornings from 9:30am-10:30am for Sunday morning bible study and Sunday School. We continue to work on the logistics of offering bible study online at the same time.

~ Out of love and concern for everyone, we are asking that you wear a mask. Please also use the hand sanitizer located inside the main doors upon entering and exiting the building.

~ Please sit one family per pew. Pews have been roped off to allow proper social distancing.

~ Hymnals and pew bibles have been removed in order to aid in sanitation of the worship space. Service bulletins will be available on a stand near the entrance of the sanctuary. At the end of the service, please take the bulletins home with you. Please do not dispose of them in the church building.

~ Please refrain from greeting one another via personal contact, i.e. hugs and handshakes.

~ Holy Communion will also continue to be offered during the worship service on the first, third, and fifth weekends. When attending worship, please follow Pastor Nate’s instructions regarding how we will celebrate the Lord’s Supper together. Precautions are being put in place in order to protect the health and wellbeing of those worshipping.

Our current reality is that this entire situation is fluid and ever changing. I pray that we can continue to open up, resume worship, and have opportunities to be with each other. I would ask for your continued prayers as we continue to walk this path and monitor the situation in the weeks to come. 

In closing, I want to encourage you by saying that I am continuing to hold all of you in my prayers. Cling to Christ; He is our strength, our hope, our support, and our ever-present help in times of trouble.

In His Grip,

Pastor Nate Ruback