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Greetings Church,
           “Beloved, let us love one another…” 1 John 4:7
           Last night, your church council met and discussed the updated CDC guidelines around masking. We are excited to share that the entire council is fully vaccinated. Additionally, after talking with folks in worship the last few weeks, it is clear that most of our attendees are fully vaccinated as well. However, Parkside is blessed to have a number of youth and children under the age of 12. We also have a few members still in process of receiving their shots.
           Out of an abundance of caution and out of solidarity for our youngest members, Parkside Lutheran will continue to require masks be worn during indoor worship and during any indoor gathering where children or unvaccinated individuals may be present. Masks will not be required during outdoor worship but we ask that you bring one with you if situation arises in which you are not able to maintain physical distancing. (e.g., using the restroom or socializing before or after worship)
           Starting this Sunday, May 30th we will resume communal singing at our services. Given the high rates of vaccination of our community, the ability to have windows open for the rest of the summer, wearing masks, and maintaining physical distancing; we feel that this is a gradual but significant step in moving towards life after the pandemic. In the coming weeks, we will also begin distributing communion from the head of the aisle with the wine in individual small glass cups.
           I invite you to take a moment and reflect on what emotions this letter stirs in you. Some will feel frustrated that we are moving too slowly. Others may feel fear that we are easing restrictions in the slightest. My hope is that we all might give and receive grace. Grace for ourselves and grace for those who feel differently than we do. Grace for leadership that is trying its best to be faithful and grace for our community doing its best to proclaim the Gospel in thought, word, and deed. Let us love one another by extending the grace God has first given to us.
           I hope to see and sing with you in worship this Sunday. I hope everyone is able to stop by on June 6th for our Chicken BBQ fundraiser. As always if you have questions or concerns please do not hesitate to reach out.
                                                May God Bless You,
                                                Pastor Jeremiah
Outdoor Summer Worship Schedule:
Starting June 20th we will worship outdoors for June, July, and August. When it rains we will move inside. You are welcome to bring your own chair but we will also have chairs for anyone who needs them. Please note we will be inside on June 27th and July 18th for Baptisms.