September 17, 2020

The Weekly Wind
News and Updates from Polk City United Methodist Church
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COVID-19, social distancing, natural disasters, social and political unrest and economic stress have been powerful reminders of how much we need one another and how important support and connection can be when facing life’s difficulties. It’s never been so clear that we, and our faith, are stronger together.

This Sunday is National “Back to Church” Sunday – a prompt after summer and vacations have ended that it’s time to get back to worshiping regularly. This year, with the pandemic and online worship, the temptation to stop worshiping altogether has never been greater. But in times like this, we need each other, and we need a strong faith in our faithful and loving God to help us navigate the stress, fear and uncertainty in this season we are in.

If you have not been worshiping regularly, this is the week to get Back to Church! Either Outdoors – safely distanced and masked – or Online. We’re also launching small group studies to help you stay connected to God and to one another as you grow spiritually.

Together, we can thrive in uncertainty, stay hopeful in a world of doubt, remain confident as fear grips our community and flourish as one.

“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:12)

See you on Sunday!
Pastor Melody
September 20 – October 25

During these times of great stress, division and fear, many of us are searching for a faith that is bigger than ourselves. This Fall, we invite you to consider with us what it means to be a deeply committed Christian, growing in faith every day, as we explore a model for Christian discipleship that is built around five essential practices – practices that we engage in both collectively and individually in order to more fully follow Jesus.

We’re asking all adults to consider purchasing the accompanying book for the series, The Walk: Five Essential Practices of the Christian Life which you can find at all major booksellers, in digital and print formats. Then join a small group for the book study – see more information below!

Join us this Fall! Deepen your walk with Christ as we explore the five essential practices of worship, study, serving, giving, and bearing witness to our faith.

Visit us at to view the bulletin, sign the connect card and make your offering.

Bring your own lawn chairs or blankets and join us for socially-distanced in-person worship. (Masks encouraged.) Unison liturgy and singing can be done softly when masked. Restrooms available.

Can you come a few minutes early to outdoor worship to greet and welcome those worshiping with us? Or stay a few minutes late to help put equipment away? Want to use your voice to read scripture and prayers in worship? Or help restock the Comet Cupboard right after worship? We’re looking for volunteers on Sundays to help with these – if you’re willing to share your time or talents in this way, please sign up!

Can we sing and say the Lord’s Prayer? The research seems to indicate that if you are masked you may speak or sing (or hum) quietly with relatively low risk of spread outdoors. If you are not masked, we ask that you do not speak or sing aloud. Our worship band is appropriately distanced from the congregation so that they can sing outdoors without masks. Please remember that you should be at least 6 feet away from anyone not in your household.

How long will we be able to worship outdoors? Our current plan is to offer in-person outdoor worship through November 22. We are looking for outdoor heaters – so if you have one we can borrow on Sundays, please let us know! Beginning November 29 – the first Sunday of Advent – we will switch back to Online worship, with the pastor and worship team livestreaming worship from our church sanctuary. We will stay online for the winter months, and look for a Sunday in early Spring when we can resume outdoor in-person worship.

Will we worship together indoors at all during the pandemic? At this time we do not feel comfortable holding indoor worship. We will continue to evaluate this as new research, treatments and immunizations become available.

Are our indoor spaces being used for ministry or small groups? Yes. The NP Comet Cupboard is occupying the Narthex, main office and double classroom space 7 days a week. The St. Luke’s Free Clinic is occupying the clinic space on the 1st & 3rd Wednesday evenings of the month. Alcoholics Anonymous is occupying the Wing in the Woods on Thursday evenings. Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Soccer and other sports/fitness groups have permission to use the outdoor green spaces. As the weather turns cold, the Wing in the Woods could be used for a committee meeting or a small group study with window and/or doors open for cross-ventilation; however, we are still not allowing personal gatherings (parties, showers, etc.) or outside organizations to use the Wing. Staff continue to work primarily from home, and pastoral care meetings are held outdoors or online.
Other questions? Call or email Pastor Melody: or 314-630-0768
Small Groups are forming now for the Fall and Winter months, so that we can become more deeply committed Christians who meet and study together to grow our faith and our relationships with God and one another. We feel these are especially important during this time of social distancing and want to encourage every single adult to join a small group!

Two groups have already been formed and will begin this week:
  • Sundays at 10:30 AM – Outdoors after Worship (with a zoom link for those at home)
  • Thursdays at 6:30 PM – Outdoors at the Hammond Residence

We are looking for more small group hosts – all you have to do is choose the time and place (in-person or online) and read the discussion questions. All materials – including a video and discussion sheet – are provided. Groups can gather online, or choose to meet outdoors in someone’s driveway, garage, deck, or even at a park. As we enter the colder months, we encourage groups to move online.

Please signup to join or to lead a group! More group options will be added as group hosts become available!
This Fall, as we work on getting in shape spiritually, many of us are looking for ways to get into better physical shape, as well. We have two new opportunities for Fall Fitness at Polk City UMC – join us for one or both! (Masks and social distancing encouraged)

  •  Tuesday Walking Club: September 22 – October 27, 5:15-6:15 PM (meet at Polk City UMC)

  • Wednesday Outdoor Yoga: September 30 – November 18, 5:30 – 6:15 PM (Polk City UMC soccer field) – look for online signup next week!
Have you seen the "Rock 'n' Stock the Comet Cupboard" outdoor concert on Saturday, September 19th from 7-10 PM at Tournament Club of Iowa? There will be live music by BECKER with food and drink available for purchase. A free will offering with 100% of the collections will be donated to support the Comet Cupboard.

Please indicate your attendance on the BECKER Facebook Event Page, which helps us prepare with adequate food, beverages, and port-a-potties. Bring your own lawn chairs/blankets. NO OUTSIDE BEVERAGES OR FOOD WILL BE PERMITTED. Social distancing guidelines will be encouraged. A great evening of music promised!
I want to thank our generous congregation for not forgetting the hungry in this Pandemic/Derecho era that we are in presently. For the month of August, you have wonderfully donated $915 to the Des Moines Area Religious Council(DMARC) Food Pantry Warehouse. The year to date total for our church is $6,610. Such a need at this time. Thank you to all for not forgetting!!

With the pandemic and the derecho on top of that our communities are so in need of any help that they can get. SNAP Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)( or food stamps as we know it) has failed in meeting the needs of those so burdened with many wants. The $600 weekly federal jobless payments have stopped. Will there be any further help? 

Across our country, 14.5 million people are collecting unemployment compared to 1.7 million a year ago. Matt Unger, CEO of the Des Moines Area Religious Council, says that everyone sees we are meeting the need and thinks maybe we don't have to come up with other solutions that the nonprofit sector will take care of it. But that is not what we are meant to be. We are not supposed to be here in place of solving problems. We are a stopgap measure.

If you wish to help with this serious need, please visit our church website If you wish to write a check, it may be written to Polk City United Methodist Church with "DMARC food pantry" in the memo and mailed to the address on the above website. If you have any questions, please contact Linda Pennington (DMARC Delegate)


Thank you for all that you do!!
Linda P.
Mark Your Calendars!

  • Saturday, Sept 19  – Rock-n-Stock the NP Comet Cupboard with Becker, 7pm (Tournament Club of Iowa)
  • Sunday, Sept 20 – Youth Kickoff (with Parent Meeting), 10:30am
  • Monday, Sept 21 – SPRC, 6pm | Leader’s Council, 7pm
  • Tuesday, Sept 22 – Walking Club begins, 5:15pm
  • Wednesday, Sept 30 – Outdoor Yoga begins, 5:30pm
  • Sunday, Oct 4 – World Communion Sunday, 9:30am
  • Monday, Oct 5 – Trustees, 6pm

Contact Us
Christine Perry
Administrative Assistant
Lauren Wilken
Director of Children/Youth Ministry
Melody Webb
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