When Everything Turns Upside Down (The Ethical Life: week 3)

Things are shifting quickly all around. Schools moving online. Restrictions on gatherings for more than 10. Restaurants and movie theatres closing. News of lay offs. So many of us trying to figure out how to work from home, and parent, and “not worry.” Not to mention, the rising numbers of infections.

It’s so much. So much is turned upside down, from even just a few days ago. So much is uncertain.

Which is why in these times, I am so grateful to be serving this community, and for this community – all of you, and this community of courageous love. We may be apart physically, but there are so many ways that we are closer than ever.

Starting with our worship service last Sunday. Wow!! Such a cool and moving experience at 9:00 to see so many of you logging on. Next best thing to actually being together.

If you didn’t make it but want to try the 9:00 live Zoom worship this Sunday, just click here a few moments before 9. If you are new to zoom, check out this overview.  And if you have specific questions, reach out to techhelp@foothillsuu.org.

At 11, we went live on our usual platforms (Facebook, our website, Roku, etc) – and got to interact with folks on Facebook in the comments. Also awesome!

More information for both services can be found here.

We’ll be back this Sunday at both 9 and 11, and we’ll keep sending the whole thing out by email by Monday afternoon. Please keep sharing your feedback as we are learning as we go.

With that in mind, with the CDC’s recent declaration of no gatherings over 50 through May 10th, we are coming to terms with the reality that this is not a short term experiment.  Until the day the restrictions start going in reverse, and the number of infections are going down, the world will keep shifting, and remain uncertain, for quite a while.

Which is why we need each other now more than ever!

Our main way to do this is through Community Circles, groupings of 20-25 geographically close and demographically dispersed households that will commit to making sure the others in their group have the friendship, the food, the medicines, the spiritual tools  – and anything else that they need – to sustain through these times. It looks like we’ll have just over 32 Circles across Northern Colorado! Training for our Leads will start tomorrow, and we’ll launch this weekend. We’ll share more info on Sunday.

In order for us to remain connected and to care for each other in this time, we ask every household to complete our COVID-19 Household Information Form as soon as you’re able.

Below you’ll find info on which of our programs and events are moving online, which are being cancelled for now, and which are officially postponed. There are creative responses happening everywhere across our congregation, and across all of Northern Colorado – to keep showing up for each other and for the most vulnerable in our community.

Finally, I want to encourage each of you to take care of yourselves, be patient with yourselves. Take good walks outside (practicing social distancing). Limit social media use. Keep up (or take up) a spiritual practice that you do every day.

This is a collective experience of trauma we are having. Even already. Expect to be a little more tired. Expect outbursts – not just from the usual suspects. Some of us aren’t used to being THISCLOSE to our whole families or partners for this much time! (And if home is not actually a safe place for you, please reach out!) 

Speaking of which – I made a video that I sent out to our community members 69 and older, urging them/you to stay home.  Take a look here. 

BUT! I’ve since changed my mind. I think it’s time we all do whatever we can to stay home.

If you don’t have all you need for groceries for a couple of weeks, if you can wait until your Circle is up and running, your Lead will help in coordinating grocery runs. If you can’t wait, please stay at least 6 feet from anyone else at the store, and wash your hands before and after, and be sure to wipe down the cart. Go as infrequently as possible. Same for medicines or other essentials. The alternatives to this sheltering in place model are not good. Seriously, stay home.  

Stay home as an act of service, and an act of love.

I am so looking forward to seeing you all again this Sunday where we will be exploring the “Blessed Unrest” of living with uncertainty. Please be in touch with questions or needs of any sort. While I’m not getting to all my email responses in these days, I am reading everything (and so appreciating your messages!!), and forwarding on any questions you have.

With love, and gratitude,
Rev. Gretchen