EDIT: ZOOM has recently updated their security procedures mandating passwords for all meetings. Please see the most recent e-Tale email or call the church office for the passwords for our regular Wednesday and Thursday ZOOM calls.
We have set up a ZOOM account for St. Mark’s, which allows us to come together via video conference. We are hosting a number of events and classes over ZOOM in the coming weeks. Here’s how to join.
Every ZOOM meeting has a “Meeting ID Code”: either a nine or ten digit number that puts you in the correct meeting, just like any old conference call might. If you already have the ZOOM application loaded on your personal computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone, then all you need is the Meeting ID. Open up the ZOOM app and click “join.” You will be prompted to input the Meeting ID, and that’s it!
Desktop or Laptop Computer
If you need to download the ZOOM client for a desktop or laptop computer, click this link (https://zoom.us/join) and type in the Meeting ID for the meeting you will be joining. The application will download to your computer, and after it is done setting up, it will direct you right into the meeting.
When you enter a meeting, it will prompt you to connect your audio. The most common way to do this is to connect audio over the internet using your computer’s microphone. (Though there is a phone option if your computer does not have a microphone.)
Tablet or Smartphone (video)
Download the ZOOM app from Apple app store or Google play store. At the time of the meeting go to the ZOOM app and type in the “Meeting ID.”
Phone (calling in without video)
Call this number: (646) 876-9923. When prompted type in the Meeting ID code.
ZOOM is a very easy platform to use, even for the least tech-savvy of us. Even so, problems do arise. Please email or call Pastor Adam if you have trouble setting it up. firstname.lastname@example.org or 860-448-5881.
Here is a one-minute video from Zoom showing how to log in.
With a heavy heart, I write to you today to inform you of my decision to cancel all services and events at St. Mark’s Church through at least Saturday, March 28th. I make this decision after much prayer, consultation with the vestry, the pastoral direction of our bishops, and learning about the closure of the Groton school district.
A unified and proactive response to COVID-19 across the state is, to my knowledge, the best posture to adopt in the face of this global pandemic, especially with the limited information available as to who may be carriers. Couple this reality with the fact that our church is home to many who fall under the category of most vulnerable to dying from this disease, and the decision to close became clear, if still painful and difficult.
For the next two Sunday mornings, I plan to live stream a worship service, including music and sermon, via our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/stmarksmystic. I will go live at 9am, and you can participate by clicking the link and scrolling down our Facebook page until you reach the live stream post. If you miss the “live” event, the video of the service will be posted afterwards on our Facebook page. I will also post my sermons on my website, wherethewind.com, as always. I plan to do a few more live streams during the weeks to update folks on our status. I will announce those in the E-Tale on Tuesday.
I realize broadcasting our services is a poor substitute for our usual in-person gatherings, the lifeblood of our wonderful community. However, at this time, the best way we can love one another is by keeping physical distance while always keeping one another close in prayer. “Social distancing” need not be “spiritual distancing.”
To that end, I hope you will reach out to one another over the phone or via video chatting. Over the next few weeks, most people will be remaining home, including school children. “Cabin fever” is likely to set in. Please take as many chances as you can to reach out. Let’s use this crisis as an opportunity to renew our bonds beyond contact on Sunday morning. The vestry will be discussing ways we can make sure our most vulnerable parishioners are looked after in appropriate ways. Please pray for one another, for our community, for the nation, and the world, as we all face this pandemic together.
In the section below, please find a link to a pastoral letter from Bishops Ian and Laura. I encourage you to read it. I will be reading it aloud as part of the live stream on Sunday at 9am. Please find also a few other resources of note.
While our services and events are canceled until March 28th, I am available for pastoral support. Please contact me via my email at email@example.com or my cell phone (860) 448-5881 if there is any way I can be of service to you during this time.
Today, I lift you up from my heart to the heart of God. Please know that nothing in all of creation can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Please pray this prayer with me at this time.
Gracious and ever-loving God, in you we take refuge and to you we commend our spirits: in this time of fear and uncertainty, grant us the peace that surpasses all understanding, that we may love from a distance, knowing that we are connected through your great and eternal love; and that we may never demonize those who are sick, but trust in your never-failing grace. All this we ask in the name of the One who healed the sick and spoke a word of peace in the midst of the storm, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
If you have any questions and concerns about COVID-19 and protecting yourself during this time, please call The Yale New Haven COVID-19 call center at (203) 688-1700. They are open Monday – Friday from 7am – 7pm.
Join us for the annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper on Tuesday, March 5th at 5:30pm in the Undercroft at St. Mark’s. This low-key event brings together two of the best things: having fellowship with your fellow parishioners.
Men of the parish, you get the kitchen all to yourselves for this event. Please arrive early to help set up and begin cooking pancakes and sausage. There’s a sign-up sheet on the Undercroft bulletin board to let organizer Dave Cruthers know you are going to help out.
Services on Wednesday, February 26th at 7am and 7pm (and 10:30am at StoneRidge)
Ash Wednesday begins the holy season of Lent in the church. The powerful service includes an extended confession of sin, in which we examine in depth the ways we separate ourselves from God and each other. Receiving the ashes is an intentional reminder both of our mortality and of God’s extravagant love for ones like us who are so fleeting. Please join us for one of the services.
They are at 7am and 7pm at the church and 10:30am at StoneRidge.
The St. Mark’s Annual Meeting is coming up this Sunday, January 26, 2016. We have only one service that day at 9am, followed by a breakfast and the meeting. At the meeting we will hear and/or read reports from parish officers and heads of various ministries; elect new members of the vestry and other positions; and hear a presentation of the 2020 budget.
Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and with it our annual Thanksgiving Dinner. This wonderful mission of St. Mark’s Church sends over 150 meals out into the community on Thanksgiving Day and serves 100+ meals in our Undercroft, as well. We welcome all people to attend, with special invitation to those who have no one to share the day with and those who can’t afford a hot Thanksgiving meal.
The dinner takes a huge volunteer effort. If you would like to volunteer your time in the kitchen, as a driver, or on the clean-up crew (especially the clean-up crew!), please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’d like to sign-up to receive a Thanksgiving meal delivered to your door, please call the church office at (860) 572-9549 or email email@example.com. (Our delivery area includes Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Pawcatuck, and Ledyard.)
We can also use donations of turkeys, pie, and other Thanksgiving staples. Let us know and we’ll gladly accept what you can give, so we can give it away, in a spirit of Thanksgiving.
Services continue at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. along with the following special summer activities
Lemonade on the Lawn
Our summer tradition of enjoying fellowship on the front lawn of the church continues this Sunday. Please sign up to provide fellowship treats and make the lemonade. A sign-up sheet for volunteer hosts is located at the lemonade cart.
The summer choir has begun! There are no Thursday rehearsals during the summer months. An ad hoc choir meets Sunday mornings at 9:00 to practice for the 10 a.m. service. Come when you can and make a joyful noise to the Lord!
Summer Stretch, for 3 year old-1st graders, has begun. The class meets on Sundays from 10 a.m, until approximately 10:30 a.m., at which point the children rejoin their parents in the service. It includes a short story and a simple craft.
The church nursery also remains open during the summer during the 10 a.m. service for newborns through age 2.