I pray you are well and healthy. The message this week is a collection of notes and thoughts I wish to share. Today is the final day to submit names and photos for the necrology. We call it an Ofrenda because you may submit anything (photo) of remembrance. I am building the video on Saturday with the submissions. The video will play in the livestream on Sunday morning during the Offertory. It will also be posted on the parish website in the post for Sunday, November 1.

Covid-19 is rising in Lucas County. I trust you are familiar with the news reports. Mike Waggoner is our first parish member diagnosed with Covid-19. If you don’t know him, he is a professional Santa Claus and typically sits front left in the sanctuary at 10AM. He is admitted to St. Lukes and needs your prayers. Mike caught Covid while in rehab after suffering a stroke a few weeks ago. Recovery from the stroke was going well.

According to information shared with me by the Fire Chief, the nursing homes and rehab centers are no longer “hot spots” for Covid-19 spread, despite Mike’s experience. The schools are also generally safe. Three students at Maumee High School tested positive in October in separate instances, but mitigation was so swift there was no further spread in the schools.

The point here, according to the Fire Chief, is the spread is occurring mostly from family gatherings, such as football parties and family dinners. Please be careful. I have been in conversation with the bishop about Christmas. We don’t know how November and December will look on the charts. We don’t know if we will close in-person worship. I hope we will remain open because our protocols and mitigation are strong. Decisions across the state seem best when made locally. On this note, attendance at Sunday Worship is about as high as we want it. It is important to pre-register online so we know who is coming. It is essential to comply with the protocols, such as wearing masks, no singing, and taking temperatures.

Interestingly, attendance on Wednesdays has been nominal. We are averaging 3 persons at noon and 6PM. This past week, 6PM Eucharist was merely me and my parents. That was odd, and a first in my ministry. I was glad they attended. According to Scripture, Jesus was also there. So I should correct the average to four. My point is I believe you are safe coming to Eucharist on Wednesdays even if you consider yourself higher risk. Please park on E. Wayne Street so you don’t have to walk through the building to reach the sanctuary. It’s a shorter walk and there is other daily activity in the building, such as the preschool.

Finally, I miss so many of you. I pray for your health and also your spiritual health. I worry some of our members have become detached from St. Paul’s through a lack of spiritual engagement. Please reach out to your friends on behalf of the parish. Let them know you care. Let me know if there is anyone I should contact.

May God Bless You and Keep You. Remember is it Daylight Savings Time Change on Nov 1.