March 20, 2020

My Dear Arlington Link Sisters,

Spring is in the air, the cherry blossoms are in bloom, and we are facing a pandemic that generations have never seen. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has suddenly shifted our lives in many ways. We all must develop a new normal in order to deal with these difficult times. We must remain vigilant and conscious of the things we have been advised to do for ourselves, our families and our communities to prevent additional spreading of the virus. Information is fluid and plentiful. 

Our 17 th National President, and beloved chapter member, Dr. Kimberly Jeffries Leonard has formed a National COVID-19 Task Force that provides weekly updates to keep us abreast of the many changes as they continue to work closely with public health experts, emergency management officials, and state and federal health officials. The National President sent a letter this week dated March 18 th , providing guidance and updates on meeting requirements, service hours, dues collection, candidate orientations and inductions, and registration for our 42 nd National Assembly. If you have not already done so, I would strongly advise you to read this message as it contains a wealth of information that pertains to each of us.

Our Eastern Area Director, Shuana Tucker-Sims, Ph.D., has also published several communications regarding this pandemic including resources that will help us manage our well-being during this crisis. Of special note is the teleconference Link Shuana is hosting on Sunday, March 22, at 8:00 p.m. for tips on stress management and a Q&A on coping during these uncertain times. The dial-in information is: (605) 313-5111; Access code: 830-678#.

As Chapter President, I established the Arlington Operations Task Force to help as we maneuver through COVID-19’s impact on chapter operations. The Executive Council, Monte Carlo Committee and Task Force Members have met several times this week to determine the way ahead as we receive guidance from our leadership.

As for our Monte Carlo 2020, I sent a letter to the Crystal Gateway Marriott Sales Manager last Friday informing the hotel management of our decision to postpone the event. We are feverishly working to reschedule the Monte Carlo and Links Bridget and Candice are in regular talks with the Marriott to ensure that when we do have our signature fundraising event that it will be even more fabulous than what was planned for March 14 th . As I mentioned before, this was not an easy decision, but it was certainly the right decision. Our Chapter Chaplain, Link Cheryl Coleman-Hall offered a very timely and appropriate prayer which I have shared with you at the bottom of this message.

As you responsibly practice self-isolation or social distancing, be sure to make good use of the time by maybe making a dent in that pile of books you have been meaning to get to, or working on your physical well-being by performing 7-minute workouts offered on MyFitnessPal and the 7 Club app. The Netflix series, Self Made Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker is available now. No matter how you decide to spend this time please know that your chapter leadership is working on your behalf. 

I thank you for your patience and understanding. Together, we are better. 

Be safe, be kind, and stay positive. 

Yours in Linkdom,
Link Diane

Diane M. Harley
Arlington (VA) Chapter

Each of us sometimes in our lives have had the challenge of making hard and tough decisions. We pray about it, weigh the pros and cons and analyze the outcomes. We prepare ourselves for the inevitabilities of the decision and in faith, guided by the Holy Spirit, our gut and intuition we plough ahead. Think back to the hand wringing, the heart palpitations, and sometimes headaches as we wrestled with our thoughts. Some of us have a difficult time making choices, we second guess ourselves, waffle back and forth while trying to come to a conclusion. Others of us can make a decision on a dime. Our minds are like computers, we input the data, analyze it and bam…decision made. As Christians we are encouraged and taught to seek God before making any decision. When the decision involves others as it always does because what affects one also affects others, we want to be especially discerning. Our Arlington Links chapter’s leadership has made such a decision regarding our Monte Carlo. We stand behind them and with them during this challenging time. There will be another day, we will have Monte Carlo 2020.

“For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding”.
Proverbs 2:6
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own insight. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
Proverbs 3:5 – 6

Let Us Pray,
God, we thank you for the minds that you have given us, for the community that you have made each of us a part, for the coming together to make tough decisions that will impact all of us. We pray for our chapter leadership, for the Monte Carlo chairs, for the committee chairs, the sub-committees and the membership of the Arlington Links. We pray for our friends, relatives, and those that support us as we seek to serve your people and the community. We pray O God for the ending of this virus around the world. We pray for those who have been infected with the virus. 

Rev. Dr. Cheryl Coleman Hall
Arlington (VA) Chapter