On Tuesday, May 5, the Council of Churches Food Pantry, located in our church building, reopened for our regular hours (Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 AM to noon). As always, this service is available to anyone living in Wamego or in the USD 320 school district.
To help keep our volunteers and customers safe, we changed the distribution process and increased sanitization. We are using the covered ramp in the alley for distribution. Drive back using the 7th street entrance. A volunteer will greet you at your window. Please remain in your car until instructed otherwise. At that time you will be asked to get your food box from the table under the canopy.
As gathering-size restrictions begin to be lifted in the coming weeks and months, many folks are wondering when we will gather at 600 Lincoln for worship. This is not an easy question to answer. The safety and well-being of our church members is my first priority. I will err on the side of caution because I love you and I value your lives.
Creating and executing a comprehensive plan for in-person worship is an enormous undertaking. For more details, readthis document on “Best Practices for Returning to Your Houses of Worship.”
After reviewing the latest information and recommendations and in consultation with the staff and church leaders, I have decided that we will not have in-person worship before I leave in June. While I am sad and disappointed, I am convinced that this is the right thing to do. I am using my best judgment and prayerful discernment in making this decision.
A plan for re-opening the church for in-person worship and other ministries will be developed by Pastor Mitch Todd in consultation with the staff and the leaders of the church.
In the meantime, we will continue offering worship via Facebook Live at 8:30 AM on Sundays. In the coming weeks, we will increase the number of people involved in leading worship and music and enhance production quality. I encourage you to gather with family and friends in small groups in your homes for worship “watch parties.”
I ask for your support and prayers as I strive to faithfully lead the church through the challenges presented by COVID-19 and the pastoral transition. We are all doing the best we can in a difficult situation with constantly evolving information. Please be kind and patient with each other, the church leaders and staff.
Grace and Peace, Pastor Michael
Monday, March 16
Based on CDC recommendations, we have made some adjustments to both our large and small gatherings to flatten the curve and help keep our church family healthy. As of today, this is our plan.
The following events have been postponed for the foreseeable future: Small groups and classes, youth group, Bible Club, Passion University, Fellowship Time and Sunday School.
This Sunday, March 22, we will not worship at 600 Lincoln. Instead, we invite you to worship online with us at facebook.com/wamegoumcat 8:30 AM.
We will make some logistical adjustments and increase sanitization for the following events:
Grace Cafe: We are discerning if/how we could provide take-home meals.
Food Pantry: We will remain open for our regular hours (Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 AM-noon).
Church Office: We will remain open for our regular hours (Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM-3:00 PM).
This is a quickly evolving situation so our plans may change but we will continue to provide updates.
Online Worship Only for Sunday, March 15
Friday, March 13
Out of concern for the health of our church family and our responsibility to help minimize the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019), we will not gather at 600 Lincoln for any Sunday morning activities on Sunday, March 15. This includes worship, Sunday school and fellowship time.
Instead, we invite you to worship with us online at facebook.com/wamegoumc at 8:30 AM. Pastor Fritz and Pastor Chris have planned a spirit-filled and interactive online worship experience including a sermon, prayer, announcements and time to express your joys and concerns. Both Pastor Chris and our bell choir will provide live music.
At this time, our other regularly scheduled events, classes and small groups will continue meeting. Individuals in charge of those events are free to make schedule changes as they see fit. Regardless, we encourage you to make your own decisions with your health and well being in mind. At this time, our office will remain open for our regular hours.
Caring for our congregation, not canceled!
Wednesday, March 18
Over the past couple of days, it has become apparent that additional adjustments to our daily operations are necessary. That said, this crisis has led to a surge of creativity and caring within our team and community. Stay tuned for more updates and resources in the coming weeks.
Office Closed to Public
In order to protect our staff, our office is now closed to the public. We are still working diligently to serve our church family and the community. If you are elderly or homebound please let us know how we can support you. We can be reached during our regular office hours at 785-456-7495 or email@example.com.
After much discernment, we reached the conclusion that we cannot continue Grace Cafe for the foreseeable future. Our food pantry will remain open for our regular hours. Food services are also available via Community Care and USD 320.
We love worshipping with you at 600 Lincoln but we can't ask that you #ComeSee at this time. Instead, we invite you to worship with us via Facebook Live on Sundays at 8:30 AM. Sermons will be on WTC's Cowboy Channel (193 & 19) on Wednesdays at 9 AM. They're also published on our Youtube channeland website.
A Message from Pastor Michael
Friday, March 20
Wamego UMC Family,
After arriving home safely from the Guatemala mission trip, the last week has felt like a whirlwind of chaos caused by COVID-19. Based on the latest information and recommendations of health officials, we have suspended all worship, classes, events and social gatherings for the time being. It is difficult to predict how long this will last. Certainly, gatherings will be canceled through April which includes Holy Week and Easter celebrations. This is disappointing but necessary for the health and well-being of everyone.
While our church office is closed, our pastors, staff and church leaders are working diligently to provide meaningful ministry, worship, assistance and care. Please contact the church with questions and to let us know how we can serve the needs of our congregation and our community.
We will weather this storm together. It will not be quick or easy or painless. There will be more challenges to overcome. Let us not give in to despair or hopelessness. We are not helpless.
We have the blessing of each other and the gifts of the Spirit to empower us. As it is written in 2 Timothy 1:7 “God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.”
This is our moment to shine. As the church, we are the hands, feet and mouth of Christ to the world. I encourage all of you to connect with God through daily prayer and devotion, check on your neighbors, support local businesses and practice good self-care for you and your families. May your acts of kindness be instruments of God’s healing love.
Grace, Peace and Love, Pastor Michael
All Gatherings Suspended
Friday, March 20
Based on the latest information and recommendations of health officials, we have suspended all worship, classes, events and social gatherings for the time being.
Our office staff will work from home until Thursday, April 2. If you have questions or need assistance from our office, we can be reached during our regular office hours. Leave us a voicemail at 785-456-7495 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will pick up our mail at the post office.
Food Pantry Closed
Our food pantry will be closed until Thursday, April 2. At this time, food services are still available via Community Care, Tuesday through Friday. A service provided by USD 320 allows ages 1-18 to pick up breakfast and lunch, Monday through Friday, at the city park.
For the foreseeable future, certainly through April, we will worship online. We invite you to worship with us via Facebook Live on Sundays at 8:30 AM. Sermons will be on WTC's Cowboy Channel (193 & 19) on Wednesdays at 9 AM. They're also published on our Youtube channeland website.
Safe at Home
Wednesday, April 1
In compliance with the stay at home orders for the state of Kansas, our office and food pantry will remain closed until at least April 19. Our team continues to work diligently to provide meaningful ways for you to worship, connect and serve while you’re safe at home. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and update you as we make decisions.
If you have questions or need assistance, we can be reached during our regular office hours. Just leave us a voicemail or send us an email. We will pick up our mail at the post office. If you'd like to be visited by a care minister (virtually, of course) please let us know! Our care ministers are still available and actively supporting our church.
While we can't keep our food pantry open at this time, other services are available in our community.