Dear Friends in Christ,

This afternoon, Governor Tim Walz announced an order that all Minnesotans are to stay at home beginning this Friday, March 27th. I encourage you to listen to the Governor’s address in full .

This measure is meant to slow the rate at which COVID-19 spreads here in Minnesota. We are not the first to be called to such measures, and we will not be the last.

In our context, those in 'critical sectors' like childcare workers, law enforcement, emergency responders, those in food production, manufacturing, and news media are exempt from the order, and the rest of us are still allowed to leave our homes for things like gas, groceries, emergency medical services, caring for family members and friends, and those finding emergency shelters. You can click here to read the executive order in full.

As your Bishop, I write to strongly encourage you to abide by these new restrictions.

I know it’s hard. It’s hard on so many levels. Yet as people who follow the Way of Jesus, who practice the way of love, we are always called to acknowledge one another’s belovedness. We are called to make sacrifices for others. To give generously. To fast prayerfully.

As you fast from physical gathering, freedom of movement, and labor, all in the service of our neighbors, I encourage you to turn inwards, to accept the invitation to dive deeply into relationship, to recognize our inter-dependance, and to get curious about what God might be doing in this time.

This could be a good time to journey the Way of Love, using resources ECMN has curated from the Episcopal Church Find online courses, videos, and reflections that you can do on your own, or via zoom with those from your faith community. And, please refer to the ECMN website page dedicated to COVID-19 response for even more resources and updates as we know more .

Let us be people of abundance, the heart and voice of Jesus in a time when the world so desperately needs it.

Blessings,
Brian signature
The Rt. Rev. Brian N. Prior
IX Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Minnesota