Each week, we will be offering ways to come together as the "church away from church" - hence, the name ChurchAway . We hope these opportunities help you feel connected to and supported by your parish family.

Let's grow together... from at least six feet apart.

Join us for Worship Online Throughout the Week!

As a way of connecting through worship and prayer, we will be offering the following services each week. You can join us via Facebook Live for all of them, and on the homepage of our website on Sunday morning.

Sunday 3/29 - Morning Prayer at 10am with Charlie and Linda Willis - through Facebook Live and on our website . Charlie will lead us in prayer, Linda Willis will read a story for the children (but all are welcome to listen!), and a choral quartet will provide great music for the service.
Monday – Friday: Evening Prayer with Charlie at 6pm through Facebook Live

We hope you will join us in worship and prayer as we walk the way of love at a safe physical distance.
[Staff Contact:  Keli Shipley Cooper , Minister for Faith Formation]

“Spiritual Focus of the Day”  

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, we are providing short devotionals via email and on our Facebook page and website. These include ways for you to engage in prayer, readings, Scripture, and stories as we continue to be the church from at least six feet apart. Sign up to receive them directly by clicking on the blue button on our ChurchAway page , and visit our  Facebook  page to view the latest post. 

Recommended Resources on the ChurchAway Page

In addition to the spiritual focus of the day, we have a list of recommended resources here on our ChurchAway page that you can also explore. Find ways to connect spiritually, receive assistance with food and services during critical closures, and donate/provide assistance for others.

Two Weekly Bible Studies

We are hosting two online  Bible studies with our clergy each week while we are "church away from church": A Psalms Study with the Rev. Charlie Dupree at 5pm on Wednesdays, and a Lectionary-Based Gospel Study with Interim Associate Rector Rainey Dankel at 11am on Thursdays. Both can be accessed through the following Zoom links:

Psalms Study w/Charlie, Wednesdays at 5pm: https://zoom.us/j/315520731
Gospel Study w/Rainey, Thursdays at 11am: https://zoom.us/j/171284117

Scripture for Online Bible Studies Week of March 29th:

Psalms Study: Psalm 46
Lectionary-Based Gospel Study: Matthew 26:14-27:66

For more info about these studies and to keep up-to-date on formation opportunities, please visit our ChurchAway page.
Coming in April: Enneagram Small Group

We will learn what the Enneagram is, explore each of the nine types, and process how to apply it to our lives. Learn more on our  social media and website.  This group has a limited capacity of 30 people and we will close registration once that is filled. *Note: we are still accepting registrants and are assessing plans for this group. We will be in touch soon!
[Staff Contacts: Linda Willis , Director of Children + Family Ministry and Cat Parler , Youth Ministry Intern]

A Prayer for the Families of St. Paul's

While we are physically apart, our hearts are always connected to each other and to Jesus. Know that you are in my daily prayers, like this prayer from Marian Wright Edelman of the Children's Defense Fund:

"O God, we pray for our children and family members and for our neighbors and their children. Help us God to remember that all Your people are our neighbors and all children are our own. We pray especially for every caregiver, doctors and nurses, health and hospital personnel, and those who serve people with special needs and other vulnerable populations. And please help us to show all children by our actions as well as our words that they are loved."

Godly Play at a Physical Distance

On the first Sunday in Lent, we began our Godly Play stories "Faces of Jesus". The wonderful thing about Godly Play is that the stories are open to the child's natural spirituality. They may want to pretend "to be church". Let that happen at their direction by your lighting a candle, deciding on a way to sit and join their circle and finish with the Feast, which can be as simple as water and crackers. We'll be posting Godly Play links and more resources on our ChurchAway page.

Children's Choir Update


To all of our choristers, we are here for you and we hope to sing with you soon! To read a letter from our Children's Choir Director, Karen, with some songs to listen to and sing at home, please click here .


[Contact: Keli Shipley Cooper, Minister for Faith Formation]

Weekly Zoom Social Hour w/the Youngish Adults

We had our first Zoom Social Hour this past week, and it was great fun seeing your faces again! We will host a Youngish Adult (20s-40s) Social Hour via Zoom every Tuesday evening between 7:00 and 8:00 p.m. Join us then: https://zoom.us/j/681083887

[Contact: Lynn Williams, Minister of Community Engagement + Outreach]

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my Mother would say to me, look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping .” ~ Mister Rogers

Emmaus Still Happening -- but, No Volunteers at This Time

Currently we are exploring how to be there for others without physically being present. Please know that Emmaus is continuing to provide needed meals and support on Thursday; we are not using volunteers at this time. We will let you know when that changes.

Outreach Highlight: Richmond Public Schools (and Surrounding County Public Schools)

We are highlighting a handful of organizations you can support from your own home. This week we are focusing on supporting  Richmond Public Schools  and their ongoing program to provide meals for students and families in need during this time. Henrico and Chesterfield counties are also providing meals and assistance to families right now. Please visit their websites for more information.

For more information on RPS and other organizations working on the front lines, visit our  Outreach Resource Page . If you have other ideas or things you would like to share, please contact  Lynn  at lwilliams@stpaulsrva.org . More ways to give back to your community and engage responsibly can be found on our ChurchAway page .
Special Arrangements for Homebound Parishioners

Our Pastoral Care team is reaching out to those who have long-term illnesses and/or are homebound to offer special encouragement at a time when we cannot visit them.

Feeling Alone? Pick Up the Phone!
 
In addition, the Vestry and other parish leaders are systematically calling everyone in the 2020 Directory, just to check in and remind everyone that we are connected through God’s loving care.  If you see an unknown caller, please take a chance that it might be a fellow parishioner and take the call.  We are finding that quite a few telephone numbers are no longer correct. So if you haven’t been called, it may be that you need to update our directory (when this crisis is over). Please be mindful, of course, of any calls labeled "Spam Risk" or something similar!
 
Charlie and Rainey are available to receive your phone messages through the church if you have particular pastoral needs. We will be glad to call you back.
 
During these trying times, we are learning how important it is to stay connected with each other. Please know that your staff and leaders are thinking of you, as together we pray for God’s mercy and healing on our community, country, and those in need around the world.

Funding Outreach Efforts

We continue to be grateful for the generosity of spirit and resources within our community during these uncertain times. For those of you who are able, please consider financially supporting any one of the organizations highlighted on our  Outreach Page .


Giving to St. Paul's

For those of you who normally give to St. Paul’s each Sunday through our offering plate, you can still make your contribution by mailing a check to the church at 815 East Grace Street, Richmond VA 23219 , or by giving online. For ways to give, visit our GIVING Page or make a contribution by texting stpaulsrva give to 77977.

We also recognize that this current pandemic is affecting many of you in different ways economically. If you are facing financial hardship or uncertainty, please do not hesitate to put a pause on your regular giving. For our annual pledgers, consider St. Paul’s the last payment you make each month, if at all. If you have questions or want to talk through anything, reach out to the finance office: ahart@stpaulsrva.org snolan@stpaulsrva.org  or  rwolkiewicz@stpaulsrva.org .

We are here to support you.
We pray for those who are ill and in need of healing: Barbara, sister of Lindy Wright; Bruce Kissal, brother of Maria Everett; Malcolm Ilnicky, son of Helen and Scott Ilnicky; Bishop Susan Goff; Beauchamp Payne; Jim Wingrove; Jamie Miller, son of Mary Miller; Vivian Cramer; Liz Whitehurst; Brittany Kahn; Allie Benitez; Katelynn Barrero; Kevin Lorio; Joseph Lorio; all members of the medical community, and those who are suffering economic hardship.

We pray for those who have died: Sonny Harris; Otis Burns, father of Michele Tisdol; and Peggy Truman, mother of Marti Truman. May their souls be at peace.

If you would like to add a name to the prayer list, please contact Administrative and Membership Associate, Carter Johann, at  cjohann@stpaulsrva.org  or (804) 643-3589 ext. 5501. For our Prayer chain and more information about Pastoral Care at St. Paul's,  please click here .