Update from Tom Pace: Click here
COVID-19 Update – Friday, June 19
As a member of the Board of Directors of Houston Methodist Hospital, I receive an email every day from Dr. Marc Boom, the CEO, which includes the specific Covid 19 statistics for the hospitals in the system. While those specific numbers are confidential, they do feed into the TMC site I have mentioned to you before: www.tmc.edu. In that daily email today, Dr. Boom put the message below in bold print. His comments are not aimed at closing down or staying open, as he makes it clear we CAN do this, but rather at helping to send a message about safe community behavior. As a leading church in our city, I know we will do our part to both comply with these behaviors, and help spread the word.
Dr. Tom Pace
The bottom line is that our region is experiencing a very dramatic spread of COVID-19. I cannot overemphasize how important it is that we all do our part to stop this spread. We can do this by doing several things. First, we must encourage vulnerable populations to stay home and not come into contact with individuals outside of their immediate family. Second, everyone should wear masks, practice exceptional hand hygiene and socially distance. Third, everyone should be as careful as they have been at any point in the last three months when the first case of community spread resulted in the cancellation of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. These past 100 days have shown that we can find a way to safely coexist with the virus. This is not only possible, but we’ve been doing it successfully in our hospitals as we’ve continued to operate during this pandemic. However, if members of the community do not change their behaviors, there is significant risk of seeing complete, uncontrolled transmission within the next week to three weeks. We can prevent this if we work together, but only if we work together. Please help spread this message.
Marc Boom, M.D.
On May 19, St. Luke’s Church Council approved the document above Moving Forward In Faith: A Guide to Gathering Together Again. We are taking a cautious approach, moving forward slowly based on the data from the Texas Medical Center and public health officials. (You can see the data yourself here.) We will start with small groups and move forward in stages as we see the virus under control. Sometimes, we may move backwards to a previous stage as we see the data. It also may be that some ministries may be able to move forward faster than others. It is currently our hope to move to small groups in June. Note that it will be a while before we gather for worship again, even with a plan for “distance loving,” our moniker for social distancing.
St. Luke’s church is not closed. The building has been closed of course, but church is open and working and serving and teaching and forming community. Virtual worship is going well, reaching more people than our worship has ever before. We are having great attendance in the classes and groups online and are investing our energy in creating better and better experiences in the days ahead. The people of St. Luke’s have been incredibly generous, so while we are working to tighten our belts and manage our expenses, our financial picture remains stable and strong.
We covet your prayers for St. Luke’s as we move forward in faith together, pursuing our vision of a city transformed by the love of Jesus. “…Let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith…” (Hebrews 12, 1-2).
Tom Pace, Pastor
Michael Lewis, Chair, St. Luke’s Church Council
Ways to Help
Although we are not gathering to worship in our building, St. Luke’s is busier than ever. We are feeding hungry youth, holding weekly food drives, reaching out to homebound members and more. At St. Luke’s we may be social distancing, but we are also “Distance Loving.” Click the button below to see how you can help.