May 2, 2020
TO THE PARISH
Dear Cathedral Friends,
I trust many of you heard the news today that Governor Holcomb will begin allowing Indiana to open on May 4 according to a carefully phased plan that includes allowing faith communities to resume worship. I also trust that you know that Mayor Hogsett is asking that residents of Marion County/Indianapolis continue to shelter-in-place until May 11. In addition, some of you may have seen today’s letter fr
om Bishop Jennifer. In this letter she asks us to continue to cooperate with her previous guidance. In that previous guidance she closed our church buildings except for the most essential needs. She is working on updated guidance for us on opening our church buildings, safely, lovingly.
I said in my last letter that we would begin to resume ministry and worship from the cathedral building when both the civil authorities and Bishop Jennifer gave their consent and the building had been adequately prepared. Bishop Jennifer has been meeting weekly with clergy of the diocese. In our last meeting, she reminded us that rectors, if in the best interests of their congregations, may hold off inside worship even if she gives overall consent to resume. This is much like Governor Holcomb’s cooperation with Mayor Hogsett with regard to Indianapolis. I will be meeting with the Wardens this weekend to begin discerning the best plan to resume ministry and worship in our building. Our facilities staff began essential cleaning this week, in preparation.
As this virus moved into Indiana and decisions had to be made, I held to principles that we would continue to worship, we would strive to continue to minister to the vulnerable, and then, we would care for one another. We have continued to worship well. The virtual worship learning curve was steep! The Sunday morning community breakfast has continued. We’re working to care for one another. I’m also certain that there are needs unspoken. If you need help with groceries, prescriptions, or other essentials, please let one of the clergy know. The cathedral phone 317.636.4577 is covered 24/7 and there is an extension for pastoral needs. I will continue to hold to those same principles in this next phase.
I know how anxious many are to be able to worship together in heart and voice, body and spirit, under one roof. I am, too. We’ve come this far by faith and cooperation. We’re not yet through this; but we can see a few more steps ahead. As soon as I know more, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, shelter-in-place and in-faith. That’s what love does. God has always been and will continue to be with us. Thanks be to God.