Dear Brothers and Sisters,

This past Sunday, many came together for the first time in months to celebrate Pentecost. Below are some photos and anecdotes shared from churches across our diocese. I hope that as you take a closer look, you find these as encouraging and spirit-filled as I did.

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. Act 2:1-4 .

St. John's Cathedral in Jacksonvill e hosted in-person, socially distanced services, along with a livestream to celebrate Pentecost.

From Dean Kate Moorehead: "In addition to hosting two small socially distant services and a livestream worship this past Sunday morning, we also offered a city-wide prayer service to give thanks for our healthcare workers and to pray for peace and justice. Here are some informal photos of us getting ready. Heads of three hospital systems were there alone with reps from the sheriff’s office, mayors office and the president of the Jacksonville city council. Bishop Howard joined us as well!"
St. Andrew's in Jacksonville worked to create a socially distanced Pentecost this year. "There were 33 in attendance. Masks were worn, social distancing was observed, and the scent of hand sanitizer hung in the air. All were very happy to see one another again. We welcomed Mother Lynne Dukes as our guest priest, Deacon Mike Barbare served as LEM, Debi Smith served as Lector, and Jane Daugherty provided music."
St. Mary's in Green Cove Springs had some unique visitors join in on their services this year!

'Look who showed up at St. Mary’s Episcopal Episcopal Church in Green Cove Springs Florida for 8:30 and 10:30 Pentecost Service. A congregation of Manatee. I joked with folks that they did a beautiful job keeping their social distant. A Holy Spirit moment. Parishioners saw the manatee as they were dismissed from church after the 8:00 service. The manatee remained there until 10:30. One parishioner who lives on the river and was watching the manatee from their deck at home texted " I saw one quickly swimming south... it most have been late for church as it was literally between the services.”'

St. John's in Tallahassee hosted a virtual Pentecost complete with a livestream of the Pentecost worship from Carter Chapel, fiery flowers arranged by the St. Agnes Altar Guild, Sarah, the soloist, leading those worshipping from home in a song of praise and a virtual coffee hour after the service.

Top left: Deacon Joe joyfully dismisses the congregation to "Love and serve the Lord!"
Top right: Beautiful, fiery flowers arranged artfully by the St. Agnes Altar Guild.
Bottom left: Sarah, our soloist, leads those worshipping at home in a song of praise.
Bottom right: Fr. Dave addresses the children of the church.
St. Patrick’s in Jacksonville celebrated Pentecost with a Drive In service. Congregants were invited to decorate their cars for Pentecost.
Christ Episcopal Church in Ponte Vedra gathered safely for this year's Pentecost. Prayer stations were set apart to ensure easy social distancing - the staff and volunteers shared prayers, readings and songs and virtual hugs!
St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Ortega is fortunate to have a lovely campus with an outdoor space large enough to accommodate parishioners during their initial re-gathering phase.  In addition to continuing virtual worship offerings, the church held an afternoon outdoor worship service on Pentecost. To maintain social distance protocols, each household was asked to RSVP and received their own space to safely worship.
St. Paul's by-the-Sea in Jacksonville Beach held a beautiful outdoor, socially distant service for Pentecost this year.
At the Church of the Holy Communion in Hawthorne Florida, a scholarship was awarded after the Pentecost service.

Recipient of this year’s $1,000 college scholarship award was Key Shaun Williams of Hawthorne High School. Mr. Williams will be studying Math and IT at Santa Fe College.
Each year a Hawthorne High senior is awarded $1,000 by Church of the Holy Communion.
The certificate and check were presented by Yvonne Ludwig, worship leader and Mission Board member.