The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost

Dear Friends,

Much is being written today about Covid fatigue.  At the beginning of the summer the promise was before us that the pandemic was a defeated foe.  We took off our masks and looked forward to a rapid reopening of society.  By September, for sure, all would be back to normal.

Now here we are in September, but thanks to the delta variant we are still needing to abide by strict pandemic precautions.  Here at Grace Church we are back in masks for all worship services, and even requiring that adults who attend in-person events be vaccinated.  In the corporate world many firms are postponing the date of their full reopening until January, and office towers throughout the city remain sparsely populated.  Fear of re-engaging seems to rule the day.  It’s enough to make you turn off the alarm, pull the covers over your head, and go back to sleep.

Please don’t turn off the alarm.  It is time to wake up and re-engage, even as we redouble our precautions against the pandemic.  The best and holiest thing you can possibly do for yourself and others is to roll up your sleeve and be vaccinated.  Then find ways to participate in and stimulate the recovery of New York City.  To that end, this week we have opened the doors of Grace Church to their pre-pandemic schedule.  Our beautiful, sacred space is available again to the public every day of the week from noon to 5 pm at least.  The Sunday and Wednesday 6 pm worship services in the chantry are back.  Come and see!

A new initiative we are trying out this fall is called “Community Nights.”  This coming Wednesday, September 22nd is the first.  At 7 pm everyone in the parish – whether you are an exploring, a new, or a continuing member – is invited to Tuttle Hall for a light supper and presentation.  If the weather permits, we will make use of the outdoor courtyard called Seymour Close.  After food, drink, and fellowship, we’ll hear parishioner Brad Anderson, who teaches English at Trinity School, talk about how Shakespeare’s great play, Hamlet, can be a window to help us understand and navigate the controversies that are roiling society today.  Brad assures us that you don’t need to be a Shakespeare scholar to enjoy the presentation.  You can just sit back and listen if you like.  Parts two and three of the presentation are Wednesdays, October 20th and November 17th.  Make plans to join us, and if possible, start the evening with the 6 pm service in the chantry.

Here are the links to the Ministry Fair this Sunday, and the Parish Showcase the week following – an exhibition of parishioner art and photography with desserts, beverages, performances.  Lots of fun!  See you in church.

The Rev. J. Donald Waring