April 29, 2021

Enter the Sanctuary

by Dr. Oliver Wagner

"Enter the gates of the Lord with thanksgiving, and the courts of God with praise. Give thanks to the Lord and bless God’s name forever. For the Lord is good and God’s steadfast love and faithfulness endure to all generations." Psalm 100:4-5
I am so excited! I hope you are, too. For the first time in 15 months, we will enter the sanctuary for worship this Sunday! It will be a communion Sunday and it is sure to come with a wide range of emotions after so much time meeting only virtually or outside. As you would expect, we are asking all to wear masks, stay home if you have COVID symptoms, keep six feet of distance between those who are not in your household, and make a reservation to attend either the 9am or 11am service. Our ushers are training and preparing to welcome you warmly and joyfully! We pray it will go well... though surely, we will learn and find ways to improve the experience after this first attempt. Thank you for your patience, grace and understanding!

You can expect about a 40 to 45-minute service with limited seating in the pews (due to the required 6 feet of distance rule.) Still, it will be wonderful to be together, to be gathered as one in Christ’s name in the sanctuary. It will be a joy to eat and drink of the one bread and one cup as one people. And if you can’t be here in person, know that we will continue to share a filmed worship service that will be emailed to you each week. The Spirit will bind us together across time and space.

If you are coming to the in-person service this week, when you walk through the sanctuary doorway, be thankful. When you come into God’s presence for congregational worship, be prayerful and full of praise. Gather in person or virtually to the church and to bless the name of the Lord who is good and loving and faithful.

The pandemic isn’t over. The battle still rages. But we are coming to a new chapter in our response and it is an exciting and important one. “‘Tis grace has brought us safe thus far, and grace will lead us home.”
The time apart has been a great challenge to us all, O God. Let our time together begin to refresh our souls and renew our commitment to each other, to ministry and to you. Amen.
Alpharetta Presbyterian Church
180 Academy Street, Alpharetta, GA 30009
770-751-0033 www.alpharettapres.com