A word from Mitch
June 16, 2020

Dear Friends and Church Family,

The fallout from COVID-19 continues to affect us all. In recent days I have heard of teens as well as adults testing positive just days after beach weekends, neighborhood parties and covered-dish suppers. We are currently seeing record high numbers in South Carolina. There is evidence that shows that these highs are due to much more than holiday weekends, protests, and neighborhood parties. Friends, community spread from relaxed physical distancing is real. There is also evidence that Columbia is set for more "spikes." Today, I write to you to encourage you to be SAFE. Wear your mask in public, practice physical distancing, and keep your guard up.

Denise and I understand, along with every parent, the very real struggle of trying to maintain physical distance during this pandemic while also trying to honor our children and their need for physical activity and interaction with peers. We truly get the struggle. Parents, please talk to you kids about risks of infection, encourage them to be safe and make them leave the house with a mask. Please, talk to them repeatedly about their personal safety. I know of multiple positive COVID cases at every high school our teens attend. They, too, need to keep their guard up.

As Americans we have been conditioned to want things quickly. We want our food right away, our customer service to be prompt, and our searches for information to be nearly instantaneous. As Christians, however, we are reminded by biblical history that exile and famine take a while. The time in the wilderness was 40 years, and while The Flood ended after 40 days, Noah and his family had to stay on the arc a few additional months. Times of exile and rebuilding take time and the work of a lot of people. Right now, one of the best things you can do for your community, your church, your city, and your state is to practice physical distancing as best you can. Every hospital bed that we can avoid being in or putting someone else in is a victory. It is a way for us to love our neighbors as ourselves.

In Christ,
Wearing masks makes everyone safer
This graphic from the University of Kansas Health System illustrates different levels of safety acquired with mask-wearing.

For more information about the use of masks and this graphic, click HERE.

Should you be in need of pastoral care , please use the dedicated extension,
(Ext. 201) when you call the parish office, 803.787.0392.
While scrolling Instagram, be sure to follow @smifsc for the Three-Word Gospel on Tuesdays and ComplinefromHome postings, M-F evenings. This week's compline postings include photos taken by David Jones .
If you would be interested in sharing your photos in this way, please contact Allison Askins .

We are honored to have have been nominated as a candidate for Best House of Worship in the annual Free-Times contest -- for the third year in a row! Please share your support and vote before July 3. We are so grateful to be able to say, "We never closed, we're just open in new ways!"
Thank you in advance for keeping your pledge current during this time of uncertainty. You may pay your pledge in these ways:

  • Use this link to keep your pledge up-to-date by going online. This online link is safe and secure. 
  • You may also mail your checks to the Parish Office at 5220 Clemson Ave., Columbia, SC 29206.
5220 Clemson Avenue
Columbia, SC 29206
803.787.0392 | www.stmartinsinthefields.com