Dear friends in Christ,

Working as a community of faith, we are called to take special care of all our people, especially the health of those who are most vulnerable. The United Church of Canada has urged congregations to respond to COVID-19 with compassion, prevention, and prayer. Each congregation is empowered to discern a faithful response, following the advice of local public health officials. After much discerning, attention to the health of our congregation, and responses from the greater community, the executive of Dorchester United Church has decided to suspend Sunday worship until April 5, whereupon we will reassess the situation going into Holy Week.

This decision is not meant to incite fear but to attend to our duty of care, joining with other churches, schools, and services. Despite the closure of the building, all ministries will continue. Pastoral care and visitation are still available to you. Please don't hesitate to be in touch with Gabrielle by phone or email (listed on our website). We will be exploring alternative methods for worship and fellowship early this coming week as we continue to monitor public health recommendations, discerning toward resuming activities, and are committed to keeping you informed.

In the confusion and uncertainty of all that is going on, I pray that we will soon be able to look back and be proud of our contribution in what was seemingly an overreaction, because relatively few people were affected by the virus. Please join us and others in praying for our world; those suffering with the virus, their communities, and all the medical professionals who are offering care and searching for a cure.

In the book of the prophet Joshua we hear God's words of reassurance: "I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

May you find comfort, rest, and peace in the weeks ahead,

Your Dorchester United Family