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It's Friday... But Sunday's a Coming!

Friends, today is Good Friday and tonight we will have a powerful Good Friday service at 7PM. It is powerful because we can see how humanity turned against Jesus, even his disciples gave up hope. It looked like all was lost, that the world was more broken than ever before. We follow the story of the pain and suffering that Jesus Christ endured until he takes his last breath upon the cross and gives up his Spirit! We will end the night in darkness and the story ends in what appears to be despair and loss. We were there at points this last year, it was dark at points. We were terrified at points this last year to even visit our neighbor. We have been experiencing the way of the cross this last year.


And yet, we know that Jesus will be resurrected. We know the rest of the story but those that followed Jesus did not know that Sunday Resurrection was coming. We can shake our heads at them for not having faith in what Jesus told them would happen and yet we often fall into the trap of giving up all hope in the midst of the darkness of this world. We often don't live as those that serve a Risen Saviour. We don't live as those who know there is more than just the fallen world around us. We don't live as those that are not afraid to die even though we know there is more to life than our current bodily vessels. Friends, Sunday is coming and at Tom's Creek it is going to be a mighty Resurrection Celebration. We have an amazing trio singing the Easter Version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" at both services. We have wonderful hymns planned and the 8am service with Carol Hipp playing organ music and Holly Phillips leading us in the hymns. Oh and at 10:30am we are planning to have Ben Mixon, the 2nd place winner of the last Maryland State Mandolin Championships, coming to play and sing with Holly, along with our own Steve Myers joining on electric guitar! We are going to raise the roof as we celebrate our Risen Saviour! And while we have opened up the sanctuary and have invited all to enter we know that for some it is not yet the right time. So we will have both tonights 7pm Good Friday Service and both Sunday Resurrection services (8am and 10:30am) on-line for you to join. Please share these opportunities with others and invite them in any way your can! Also the music will be almost completely different at the 2 services so you might want to join in for both of them.


A couple of housekeeping tips on worshipping in the sanctuary if you decide to come and worship this way. You will need to wear a mask or face shield into the building. If you forget or do not have a mask or face shield a mask will be provided to you to wear while you are in the building. There will be a sign-in station where you can get a bulletin and other items so keep walking when you come through the door until you get to the sign-in table. At the sign-in table there will also be a place to put prayer requests because we will not be sharing them during the service, you can also e-mail your pray requests to Karen Wivell. We will not pass the plate during the service but your monetary offering can go in the wooden box that is next to the sign-in table. Also, we will have pre-bagged pieces of bread and little sealed cups for communion on the table that you will need to get before the service. There are hand sanitizer stations throughout the church and they are there for you to use them. You are NOT required to have received a vaccination in order to attend worship. In the sanctuary we have not roped off pews so there is not a guarantee of being 6 feet apart. I will not be wearing a mask while on the altar and any singers we have on the altar will not be wearing mask. IF you are concerned about being at least 6 feet apart from everyone else we will have the downstairs set up with chairs that are spaced over 6 feet apart and the service will play on the television down there. Currently, we will not be having a fellowship time downstairs in order to increase health safety.


Attached is the bulletin that you can view or print out for Sunday morning. Here is some further details about ways to access our services this Sunday and the same links will work tonight starting at 6:50pm.


You can catch the Facebook Livestream at: https://www.facebook.com/tomscreekumc .

We will start the Facebook Livestream at 7:50am and 10:20am and you will see messages on the screen and hear music playing. This is the best option if you want to interact with others online. Feel free to chat to each other before and during the service. You can put prayer requests in the chat. This is great way to be able to interact with others if you watch it live with others in your church family who are staying home but want to worship as part of an online community. It will continue to be there to watch later and feel free to share or create watch parties in order to share it with others.

You can catch this livestream on our Toms Creek UMC channel at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX6E7eCwH2ZGYspkSCF0CGw/featured. We will start the YouTube Livestream at 7:50 am and 10:20am and you will see announcements scroll and hear music playing. PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU ARE ON THE CORRECT SERVICE OR YOU MIGHT END UP WATCHING THE PREVIOUS WEEK! This format is best if you are watching on a television or large screen with lots of people gathered around. You can have it fill the whole screen and just watch it without any distractions. There is a way to chat on YouTube but it normally has a lot less people and is normally a lot less chatty than the our Facebook livestream. If you subscribe to our channel it will let you know when we go live in future weeks. Later in the day another shorter version of the service is posted but for this coming series I recommend taking in the entire worship experience.


You can go to our website here https://www.tomscreekumc.com/service-videos and by Monday morning there should be a version of our service. Sometimes the whole service is there instead of the shortened version depending on different factors.

You can also use a phone to listen to our service by calling 857-799-9465 from any phone starting at 10:20 am. This will only have sound coming through and you will not be able to see anything that is occurring. If you would like we can we make a DVD of the service for you to watch just let the church office or Pastor Heath know.


OR

you can text 844-406-0358 with an amount as the text. It will set up to give over text and from then on you just put in the amount and your donation to the church will go right through

or

you can go to our website and hit the donate button on our webpage, https://www.tomscreekumc.com

OR

you can mail your offering to:

Tom's Creek United Methodist Church

10926 Simmons Road

Emmitsburg, MD 21727


We have been through so much in this last year BUT SUNDAY IS COMING! We have seen death and sickness BUT SUNDAY IS COMING. We have seen brokenness in so many forms in our nation and around the world BUT SUNDAY IS COMING. We have not been able to join together in our gorgeous sanctuary with our restored stained glass BUT SUNDAY IS COMING. We have been forced to feel very alone and secluded from the Body of Christ BUT SUNDAY IS COMING.

Today and tonight let us remember there have always been days that were bleak and everything felt hopeless. Let us remember that the only way we are able to truly have hope is because of what Jesus endured on a Friday long ago BUT SUNDAY IS COMING!!


Blessings,

PH



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