I've been rewatching The Crown lately. There is an episode where Prince Phillip is totally enamored of the 1968 trip to the moon. After the landing, but before Prince Phillip actually has the opportunity to meet with the astronauts, he meets with a group of Anglican priests who are having a crisis of faith.
Here is a little of dialogue:
Priest: It's clear we are failing to connect with people. More and more people are finding their spiritual needs being met elsewhere.
Dean Wood: Where, for example?
Prince Phillip: The moon. ... Five hundred million people watched the lunar landing.
Dean Wood: Five hundred million people getting from televisions what they used to get from the church. A sense of coming together, a sense of community, of awe, of wonder.
It used to be that we came together on Sunday morning. We hugged each other, we had conversations before church, we gathered for coffee and more conversation after church. We experienced a meal together in the Eucharist. As a congregation we have experienced the wonder of seeing someone feeling safe in a church setting for the first time in decades. We have experienced the sense of community where it is clear that everyone is welcome.
Those things disappeared in 2020.
A small group continues to gather in-person on Sunday mornings. Conversations are limited. But still, there is something about being in a room with others who share a faith that brings us together. Just a simple "Hello" and smile from someone passing by brings a sense of community.
We don't want anyone to feel unsafe, but if you are able and willing, think about joining the St. Stephen's community on Sunday mornings. We have hand-sanitizer. We have social distancing. We have a meal to share. We have as much socializing as you are comfortable with. And we have a community.
- Ann Warner