Hi congregation.

So now we are into “shelter in place” in Illinois through April 7, prompting another new development in church operations. Jeanette and I had no luck convincing the governor that we are “essential work personnel” so the church offices will be closed during this period. Here are a couple things it might be helpful for you to know:

1. I will have limited access to email at home. The best way to reach me during this period is using my cell phone 217-251-9533. I am still not real proficient at texting but text is OK. Second best is home phone 465-9263. If it is a communication that has to be by email, please send it to revwms58@gmail.com.

2. Laurie and I are working on a way to put a shortened weekly video “worship service” on our website and Facebook page. We will likely not get anything up by 10:30 tomorrow morning, our usual worship time, but hope to soon after that. You may want to check in there from time to time, or I may be able to let you know as soon as one is in place.

3. In the meantime, several churches of our presbytery are already able to stream or show some version of their service. So please consider worshiping with one of these:

Carbondale, at firstprescdale.org

First Champaign, on Facebook Live and YouTube. Details at firstpres.live.

Copper Creek Champaign on their Facebook page

McKinley Champaign on Facebook Live

First Danville on Facebook and You Tube

First Decatur on Facebook and You Tube

First Mattoon on Facebook Live

First Urbana on Facebook Live and ZOOM audio.

4. While we are not able to get together in person, please reach out to me and each other to stay in touch. And particularly if you are in need of anything that one of us in your faith community can help provide, let us know. Jeanette sends this piece of information: Our Walmart will have a shopping period just for those over 60, after the store has done the night’s restocking: Tuesdays 6:30 to 7:30 AM, before the store is open to the general public at 7:30. This begins March 24.

I plan to return to the church between 4 and 5 today, to see if any of you had questions or concerns you wished to reply to me by email. This notice will also be on our website and Facebook page, and I will mail copies to our members without email. Take care; you are in God’s care and the prayers of your pastor and faith family.

Maybe see you at Walmart!


P.S.: A Deacon responded to me and asked that I pass on again the offer the Deacons reminded us of at last week’s worship service, that they are here to serve you. Our Deacons are: Tom Hebermehl 808-1203; Jane Bittner; Joanna Hebermehl 822-1201; Michae Jewell 218-1304; Deb Benefiel 808-2285; Mellie McCollough; and Steve Benefiel 822-9285.