We're still gathering for online worship for now as we continue to take precautions to prevent COVID-19 infection and spread. We’re building a #biggerTable and all are welcome – newcomers, members and friends (like our in-person worship, once we’re able to gather again).
You may want to light a candle for worship.
We’ll celebrate Holy Communion even while we’re apart.
- For most people having the physical elements of communion available will mean a piece of bread or cracker and a cup of wine, grape juice or water. Gluten-free bread or crackers are also welcome.
- You don't need anything fancy to celebrate. Please, this isn't the time to joke on social media about your choice of wine or bread (a concern raised by our bishop).
- Jesus used the most common and basic foods to bless so that Holy Communion would be accessible to all.
During online worship, Pastor Wendy will speak the comforting words, “In the night in which He was betrayed…”
- The bread and wine you have at home will be tangible signs of God's promise to be present in, with and under the elements of Holy Communion.
- We receive this meal and the forgiveness, grace and love it brings as an act of faith.
- We trust that God will be where God has promised to meet us, transcending physical boundaries during the pandemic.
Bags are still available for pick up in containers outside the Luray entrance. Planning to pick one up? Let us know (optional)
Prayer practices, ritual, and activities for faith formation, wherever you may be.
The irony isn't lost on us that this Lent, we are continuing to fast from our normal way of doing things. A year of masks, social distancing, and forced innovation has left us tired and longing for redemption and freedom. These 40 days leading up to Easter, we bury our hallelujahs and look with hope toward the resurrection.
We’ve prepared Lent in a Bag for you and invite you to explore various ways you can experience and practice prayer in your daily lives. Prayer can engage all the senses as you connect with God, and our prayer is that you experience prayer anew using these practices.
As we embark on this new season, be encouraged! Church certainly looks different this year, and the beautiful thing about it is we can share the Good News in new and fresh ways with our communities.
This GSLC Lenten Journey 2021 guide (pdf) pairs with your Lent in a Bag. In the bag, we’ve provided some items used for the weekly spiritual practices. Others we hope, you’ll find in your home (things like pencils, crayons, markers, paper, flour, sugar, salt, etc.) or in nature!
Join us Wednesday evenings if you can
Through March 24, we’ll gather online at 7 PM for Holden Evening Prayer, followed from 7:30 to 8 PM with time together for a Lent in a Bag spiritual practice. Join us online for either, both or use the GSLC Lenten Journey guide (pdf) on your own, knowing others are also doing these practices.
We’re using Zoom to gather online for worship at this time. Zoom allows us to interact, even though we’re all participating from our homes:
- Readers can read the Scripture for us.
- Assisting ministers can lead prayers.
- Music and a bulletin can even be shared on screen.
- We'll share a children's message at the 9:45 AM Zoom service.
- (We’ll even have an offering :-)
We’re glad technology allows us to gather even when we must be physically apart. In doing so, we’re working together to:
- Protect folks who are more susceptible to virus complications.
- Help flatten the curve through social distancing.
- Be God's hands at a time of some uncertainty.
Sundays at 8:30, 9:45 and 11 AM
Sunday School at 9:45 AM (starts in worship,leads directly to education time)
What will I experience in worship at Good Shepherd?
- A community of people who are passionate about growing in faith and reaching into the community around us with the love of God embodied by Jesus.
- Worship that is joyful, inspiring and relevant to your life today.
...tend to follow a more traditional liturgy that varies by church season (we change it up every six to eight weeks or so) and often includes the ancient form of chanting. The adult choir usually sings at the 11 AM service.
...is more casual in nature. Children begin in worship with their families and hear an opening prayer, gospel reading and children’s message before going to Sunday School. Some children choose to stay in worship rather than attend Sunday School and that’s okay too. This service usually uses the piano for accompaniment rather than organ.
On the fourth Sunday of the month, there’s no Sunday School and children remain with their families in worship. They also take worship leadership roles by reading Bible texts, helping to serve communion, collecting offering, etc.
...follow a pattern of worship that includes singing, prayer, Bible readings, a sermon, communion meal, receiving offering and a children’s message. Occasionally, members of the congregation or others share a faith story as part of our worship. Services are about an hour long.
In July and August, we have two worship services each Sunday at 8:30 and 10 AM. These tend to be a blend between the traditional and casual. There’s always a communion meal and children’s message at both. We often have special music in the summertime.
At Good Shepherd we believe that worship is for all God’s children. Infants to children of every age are welcome to fully participate in worship, and parents with young ones can feel comfortable knowing that the sounds of children are part of our joyful praise.
Nevertheless, some parents prefer that their younger children be cared for in a nursery setting during worship. We have a staffed nursery during the 9:45 AM service (10 AM in July and August).
Every week when we gather, we participate in Holy Communion, sometimes called Holy Eucharist. As we share in bread and wine, we believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament and among us.
We welcome all baptized persons to join us for communion as they are comfortable doing so.
What do I do if I would like to be baptized or have my child baptized?
That’s easy – talk to Pastor Jen! She typically meets at home with those desiring baptism for conversation about what baptism is (and isn’t!)
Baptisms are public acts done in the midst of a worship service so the one who is baptized experiences the love and prayers of the faith community they’re entering into.
We schedule baptisms throughout the year at any of the worship services on a mutually-convenient Sunday.