9:45 A.M. Sunday School -- 10:45 A.M. Sunday Worship
Blooming Grove United Methodist Church
Monday, April 06, 2020
Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

BG COVID-19

 
COVID-19 Updates
 

See below for the most current updates regarding our congregation's response to the Coronavirus and how we can best care for everyone's health and safety.

 
Sunday, 4/5/2020 - 10:00 A.M. - "Facebook Live" Morning Worship with Pastor Kathy King
Link to our BGUMC Facebook page below for our celebration of Palm Sunday and Holy Communion, led by Pastor Kathy King.  Our Bishop, Bruce Ough, has granted permission for pastors to now do online communion, which consists of clergy offering the words of consecration remotely, and people using elements in their home to take communion.
 
 
 
Wednesday, 4/1/2020:  Mid-Week Lenten Message from Pastor Kathy King

Link to our BGUMC Facebook page below for Pastor Kathy King's mid-week Lenten message for our Prairie Lakes Parish.  

BGUMC Facebook

 
 
 
Tuesday, 3/31/2020:  Prairie Lakes Parish & BGUMC Response to COVID-19 - Message #3

 

 Dear Blooming Grove UMC Family -

Based on a 3/24/2020 update from our United Methodist Bishop, Bruce Ough, we will now continue gathering “virtually” for worship and meetings through at least May 10th.  We invite you to read his full announcement, as well as his words of hope and encouragement, in the two links below, both found on www.minnesotaumc.org.:

 

In the midst of the changes driven by the coronavirus pandemic, we continue to think of you and offer a number of ways to stay connected as a church family.  Weekly updates will be provided through the following sources:

  • Direct email communication with the congregation – or phone call for local persons without email
  • BGUMC Website – “COVID-19” Navigation Tab - http://www.bloominggroveumc.org
  • BGUMC Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/Blooming-Grove-United-Methodist-Church-102762953095215/
  • Prairie Lakes Parish Facebook page (new) – https://www.facebook.com/Prairie-Lakes-Parish-of-the-United-Methodist-Church-105151027807869/?modal=admin_todo_tour .  This page was created in response to the coronavirus pandemic and our new world of social distancing.  We hope that it will be a helpful way in which to remain connected with one another.  It will house posts that involve all three churches of the parish, including such things as messages from Pastor Kathy, Wednesday Lenten reflections, live-streamed Sunday morning worship services, and live-streamed Holy Week services.  Each of our three churches will continue to support their own individual Facebook pages as well - sharing news, events, and stories specific to their individual congregations. Our BGUMC page will also re-post messages from Pastor Kathy and live-streamed worship services (after they take place).

 

You may also feel free to contact Pastor King directly:

  • Email:  kking5@hickorytech.net
  • Phone: 507-382-2483

 

Please see the information below about opportunities to “be together” in the weeks ahead.   Feel free to share this with your family, friends, and neighbors.  Blessings of good health and safety to you all.

--Pastor Kathy King and Judy Mahler (PPRC liaison for BGUMC)

 

We invite you to join together in community through the Prairie Lakes Parish Facebook page (see link above)

  • Regular Sunday Morning Worship:  Live Streamed at 10:00 A.M. 
  • Mid-Week Lenten Reflections:  Posted each Wednesday
  • Palm Sunday Worship:  Live Streamed at 10:00 A.M.
  • Maundy Thursday Service, April 9th:  Live Streamed at 7:00 P.M.
  • Good Friday Service, April 10th:  Live Streamed at 7:00 P.M.
  • Easter Sunrise Service, April 12th:  Live Streamed at 7:00 A.M. from Pastor Kathy’s patio!
 
 
Tuesday, 3/31/2020:  Weekly Email Check-in from Pastor Kathy King 

 

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior!

As I listened to the news yesterday, one announcer said, this coming Palm Sunday! In the midst of the busyness, I had spaced off that April 4th is 2020’s Palm Sunday. I know with all of my reading that this is our last Wednesday “Lenten Service” but to hear someone speak the reminder is somewhat reassuring! In the middle of everything, Jesus will again ride triumphant into town and remind all of us that He comes in the name of the Lord and He is—indeed—blessed!

 

I can’t tell you all how much I miss seeing you and connecting with you. Perhaps this is God’s way of reminding us how much our faith families need one another and rely on one another? Tomorrow evening’s message from Adam Hamilton’s The Walk series is titled “Share”. I look forward to sharing that message😉  

 

Parents with young children—even those children who don’t consider themselves to be young children—watch your emails for a meeting invite on Saturday morning at 9:30. If you have video capability—great! If not, please phone in and put it on speaker so your young one can interact with the group. I need to see those faces or at least—hear their voices. It will be a time for them to update me about their lives. Parents with Confirmation youth, I heard from the majority that Saturday at 1 works best for us to meet. Please, reassure your young person that we won’t be talking homework here. It will be our time to check in and hear one another in these times of being secluded from our group. Also parents, these worship opportunities are a good time for your confirmation student to get their sermon notes in. I’ll accept their notes from any video posted on our church Facebook sites. If you are attending other church worship services, I’m glad you’re experiencing those but I would rather your sermon notes come from our videos. It is my way of understanding what your age-group likes and doesn’t like from UM liturgy. And I know, your favorite part of the sermon is the end but—please, find a topic in the message other than the end? 

 

We continue to pray as a community. I continue to receive updates from all of you—thank you! Please pray for the following:

  • People with health concerns
  • Our Healthcare workers - and in particular - those with connections to our congregations  
  • Persons grieving the loss of loved ones
  • Our families expecting new babies
  • Persons in the military  
  • School employees and administration  
  • Our first responders  
  • People working in service industries like truckers, grocery stores, and pharmacies.

Yesterday’s devotional from The Upper Room Disciplines, asked that we read Psalm 118: 1-2. “O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his steadfast love endures forever! 2 Let Israel say, “His steadfast love endures forever.” From the devotional are these words, “To be steadfast means to be firm in belief or in place. A tall order, to be sure, but certainly one that describes the relationship God offers us. God will always be; God will not desert us or fall short” (pg. 118). Let us be steadfast in our God. These are days when we really need to be reminded that God’s love endures forever, no matter what! 

 

Know your Pastor misses you—each one. Be well, stay safe, and wash your hands!

  

 
 
Sunday, 3/29/2020:  Announcement
New Facebook Page for the Prairie Lakes Parish
We invite you to like a new Facebook page for the Prairie Lakes Parish - found at https://www.facebook.com/Prairie-Lakes-Parish-of-the-United-Methodist-Church-105151027807869/?modal=admin_todo_tour 

The Prairie Lakes Parish is our three-point charge here in South Central MN consisting of Blooming Grove UMC, Janesville UMC, and Waterville EUMC - all served by Pastor Kathy King. Our parish Facebook page was created in response to the coronavirus pandemic and our new world of social distancing.  We hope that it will be a helpful way in which to remain connected with one another.  It will house posts that involve all three churches of the parish, including such things as messages from Pastor Kathy, Wednesday Lenten reflections, and live-streamed Sunday morning worship services. 

Each of our three churches will continue to support their own individual Facebook pages as well - sharing news, events, and stories specific to their individual congregations. Here at our BGUMC page, we will also re-post messages and live-streamed worship services as posted by Pastor Kathy on the Prairie Lakes Parish Facebook page.
 
 
 
Sunday, 3/29/2020 - 10:00 A.M. - "Facebook Live" Morning Worship with Pastor Kathy King
Link to our BGUMC Facebook page below for our second "Facebook Live" Prairie Lakes Parish worship.  
 
 
 
Wednesday, 3/25/2020:  Mid-Week Lenten Message from Pastor Kathy King

Link to our BGUMC Facebook page below for Pastor Kathy King's mid-week Lenten message for our Prairie Lakes Parish.  

BGUMC Facebook

 
 
 
Tuesday, 3/24/2020:  Announcement 
MN UMC Bishop to Extend Suspension of In-Person Worship and Meetings
After much consultation, prayer, processing of data, and seeking to comply with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and our three state governments (MN, SD, ND), Bishop Ough is extending his earlier request and now asks that all our congregations suspend in-person worship until at least May 10th, in compliance with the CDC's eight-week ban on gatherings of 50 people or more and the closure of schools and many public places in the Dakotas-Minnesota Area.  He will continue to monitor new data and directives, or relaxed restrictions, and update or modify his request as appropriate.  He also urges the postponement or cancellation of all non-essential, in-person small group meetings or gatherings in our church buildings during this timeframe.  We invite you to read the Bishop's full announcement, as well as his words of hope and encouragement in the two links below, both found on www.minnesotaumc.org
   
 
 
 
Tuesday, 3/24/2020:  Weekly Email Check-in from Pastor Kathy King
 
Hello faith family!

 

I will limit my emails to you to once a week to reduce filling your mailboxes. Please know your Pastor misses you and prays you are well.  This week’s continued prayer list includes a few additions. Please take time to lift these people in prayer. Prayer focus:

  • Healthcare workers 
  • Those working in the essential fields. 
  • Persons with health concerns
  • Our expectant mothers and their families
  • Persons in the military
  • School employees and administration working to provide meals to students
  • Our first responders - firemen and women - and police officers
  • People working in service industries like truckers, grocery store workers, and persons working in pharmacies.
  • Families facing the uncertainty of unemployment or unpaid furlough

We hear each day of the increasing number of coronavirus victims. I pray you are practicing social distancing and staying home as much as possible.  We will continue to offer Sunday morning worship and midweek Lenten reflections through the facebook pages of the three churches in our Prairie Lakes Parish.

 

Metrics are read by checking our posted videos on Facebook and counting how many watched the video for a certain length of time. On Sunday, we had over 600 “hits” with 159 watching the video for the required length of time. If we consider splitting it three ways, that’s 53 for each church in the Prairie Lakes Parish!


This week’s Lenten focus is “Give” from Adam Hamilton’s series “The Walk”.

 

Thank you for your continued support of your church. Our mailing addresses are: 

  • Blooming Grove UMC:  PO Box 171, Medford, MN   55049-0171.
  • Janesville UMC, 401 N. West Street, Janesville, MN 56048
  • For those who do not have access to online giving in Waterville, the WEUMC address is: 319 East Main Street, Waterville, MN 56096

My prayers include each of you. Be well and stay safe!

 
  
 
Sunday, 3/22/2020 - 10:00 A.M.:  "Facebook Live" Morning Worship with Pastor Kathy King
Link to our BGUMC Facebook page below for our first ever "Facebook Live" Prairie Lakes Parish worship - led by Pastor Kathy King - speaking from the Janesville UMC Sanctuary. 
 
 
 
Saturday, 3/21/2020:  A Video of Calm
"The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want ...  He leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul."  Psalm 23.  (Click on Link for a moment of March 21st quiet waters from Kaplan's Woods in Owatonna.)
 
 
 
Friday, 3/20/2020:  Weekly Email Check-In from Pastor Kathy King

 

Faith family,

 

This morning’s devotional from The Upper Room Disciplines, encouraged me to read John 9: 1-25. It is the story of the blind man whose sight was restored after Jesus’ saliva and dust were applied to his eyes. From this Scripture, our infamous hymn, “Amazing Grace” was born and within the lyrics are the words, “I once was blind, but now I see; was lost but now am found.” As a part of our worship time this morning, Jerry and I listened to Chris Tomlin’s “Amazing Grace, My Chains are Gone”. I hope you are taking moments to be in personal worship. 

 

Our Lenten series “The Walk” (Adam Hamilton) told us that worship can be (and should be) both corporate and personal. Remember the fist on one hand and the open handed fingers of the other and how they can encourage us to hold one another close and to pray at least five times a day (waking, breakfast, lunch, and dinner and bedtime). Let us hold one another close in prayer during these times, especially those working in the medical field and those requiring medical care.


Please, if you are having an especially difficult day, reach out to me. Text, Messenger, telephone—I will hold you up in my prayers. 

 

I admit, I am reaching out of my comfort zone in posting videos. This Sunday, I will begin to offer messages through Facebook Live. I know this leaves out many who do not have access or choose not to use Facebook but it is a way to be with those who do. I will begin at 10:00 a.m. from our JUMC sanctuary.   You can find us at the link to Janesville's Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/umcdisciples/?hc_location=ufi.  Next Sunday, I will do the same from the Waterville sanctuary; the next—Blooming Grove. Each will be from that congregation’s Facebook link. So, if you “do” Facebook, be sure to “Like” your sister congregation’s Facebook pages. And, pray. Your Pastor is somewhat technology literate but there are so many things dependent on the Internet. 


I leave you with this prayer for your day: Come to us Lord Jesus, and restore our sight. Reveal to us who you are. Grant us open hearts to reach out in your love in ways that you would have us connect. Give the doctors helping Darla and Del wisdom and compassion. Hold those who work in health care in the safety of your grace as they courageously give their time and care to so many. Come Lord Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

Tuesday, 3/17/2020:  Prairie Lakes Parish & BGUMC Response to COVID-19 - Message #2

 

Church family of the Prairie Lakes Parish,

 

Our Lenten services and worship services are canceled through the end of March to comply with the CDC and the recommendations of our Minnesota United Methodist Bishop (Bruce Ough). This places a real burden on our church financial teams who rely on our weekly giving to support our staff, our buildings, and our United Methodist connection-based giving. Waterville EUMC has online giving on their website. For now, Blooming Grove UMC and Janesville UMC members and friends can mail offerings to the church addresses listed below. Mail will be monitored. We would like to consider online giving access for BGUMC and JUMC soon. 

  • Blooming Grove UMC:  Post Office Box 171, Medford MN 55049-0171
  • Janesville UMC:  401 N. West Street, Janesville, MN 56048
  • For those who do not have access to online giving for Waterville EUMC: 319 East Main Street, Waterville, MN 56096

I am discovering ways to use technology to share online videos of messages with you. I posted a short clip to the Waterville Evangelical UMC Facebook page for my initial attempt. I will be doing more. Each week I will be in one of our three buildings to create my weekly reflections. I say buildings because for now, we are the church in our homes. If you have comments, please call, email, or text me. I may not have the know-how or the energy to do everything but I promise to consider all of your requests.

 

I know we have people who do not have a computer or access to video messages. Let’s work to make a list of those people.  We can reach out to them via telephone to let them know we are thinking of them and available to help in ways we can. Send me an email with the names on your heart.

 

I’ve had prayer requests for specific groups on the front lines, as well as others, including the following:    

  • Healthcare workers
  • Persons with health concerns 
  • Incarcerated men, women, and their families who will not be allowed to visit
  • Nursing homes and care facilities on lockdown
  • Persons in the military
  • School employees and administration working to provide meals to students
  • Our first responders - firemen and women and police officers
  • Persons working in service industries such as grocery stores and pharmacies 

 Know that your church leaders are working to determine the best way to be the church in these days. We are called to be disciples. Period. There were no conditions listed. Jesus sent his disciples out telling them not to worry about clothing or places to stay. Matthew 25-27: Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”

 

An update will be posted on our church Facebook pages today regarding worship and meetings. I am always available by phone, text, or email. 

 

Please be safe.

 



Saturday, 3/14/2020:  Prairie Lakes Parish & BGUMC Response to COVID-19 - Message #1

 

Dear Friends, 

Churches and other groups that hold public gatherings have been talking, praying, and seeking guidance on how best to love our God and our neighbors during the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).  These are difficult days that require difficult decisions.   

 

Yesterday, we received updated information from several sources regarding strategies to slow the spread of COVID-19.  Based on this information, and after prayer and discussion with leaders in all three churches of the Prairie Lakes Parish, we have made the following decisions for our three-point charge:    

·       We will evaluate group gatherings on a day-by-day and event-by-event basis.  Our Prairie Lakes Parish team will talk weekly and keep our community updated via Facebook, church websites, email, and calling trees.

·       This weekend’s confirmation event has been cancelled.  

·       This Sunday, March 15th, there will be no morning worship or Sunday School.  

·       On Tuesday, we will re-evaluate the situation and communicate a decision regarding the Wednesday, March 18th Lenten Service, to be hosted by BGUMC. 

·       The Celebration of Confirmation will be postponed until the fall.

·       If a pastoral need arises, please contact Pastor Kathy directly.  Also, if you need assistance with such things as grocery shopping, etc., let Pastor Kathy know and we will match you with someone who might be able to fill that need.  

 

Our decisions were made based on the information and advice released on March 13th from the National Center for Disease Control, the Minnesota Department of Health, and the Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church https://www.minnesotaumc.org/covid-19-preparedness .  These decisions have not been made lightly.  Our main concern is for the health and safety of our families, co-workers, and others with whom we have contact, and especially those most vulnerable among us with underlying health issues.  Please note that a number of other United Methodist Churches in Minnesota are making these same decisions - some canceling all public events, including Sunday Worship, until further notice.  

 

I can’t tell you how it saddens me that we are living in the time of a pandemic, BUT we have a faithful God who cares for us, who has given us minds to think, and wisdom to follow the recommendations of those who are working to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.  Let us pray for those who are ill, for the medical teams caring for the infected, for those working to contain the virus, and for those policy-makers who are determining response protocols.  

 

Even though we may not be able to gather for in-person worship, prayer, study or fellowship, we can continue those practices from wherever we find ourselves.  We are a community and we are here for one another.  Check in on one another.  Pray for one another.  And continue to serve one another and the world around us.  I trust we will be back together soon.

 

Please contact me, or a member of your PPRC, if you have questions or concerns.

 

In Christ - Pastor Kathy King              

Cell:  507-382-2483      

Email:  kking5@hickorytech.net