In this time of fear and isolation in our local community and our world, we will be posting prayers and spiritual resources on this page.
We are not alone. While we may be keeping our physical distance, let the space between us be filled up with the Spirit.
The Strength of Community
When Howie and I travelled to Africa many years ago, I was intrigued by a necklace featuring two crocodiles with a single belly. I asked what that meant and learned the word “ubuntu.” It means “I am because we are” and represents a belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity.
I still have that necklace and its message rings true during COVID-19. I have been isolated in my room at Christie Gardens for six weeks. Denied my community, I have felt afloat. I have been reminded of how important my family, friends, and church are to me. We don’t exist outside of our community. Now that I am able to get out for walks, I look forward to being back in my community and living according to “ubuntu”.
We Live Because Everything Else Does
I’ve been considering the phrase “all my relations” for some time now. It’s hugely important. It’s our saving grace in the end. It points to the truth that we are all related, that we are all connected, that we all belong to each other. The most important word is “all.” Not just those who look like me, sing like me, dance like me, speak like me, pray like me or behave like me. ALL my relations. That means every person, just as it means every rock, mineral, blade of grass, and creature. We live because everything else does. If we were to choose collectively to live that teaching, the energy of our change of consciousness would heal each of us- and heal the planet.
-Richard Wagamese, Embers
ESG Builds Community:
Spring 2020 Community Engagement Ambassador Initiative
“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” Psalm 133.1
Our church building may be closed due to the covid-19 pandemic, but we continue to find new ways to be in community. Working through a team of ‘ESG Ambassadors’ we are calling members and friends of ESG. This initiative complements the ongoing work of our Pastoral Care Team. There are 5 Ambassador Champions, and more than 30 Ambassadors who will call about 10 people, so that we can reach out to all members and adherents. The Ambassadors will call people a number of times in late spring, early summer. During these phone calls, the Ambassadors are checking in to find out how people are faring throughout this COVID 19 period of uncertainty, to offer a listening ear, and to learn about peoples’ strategies for navigating the current challenges. We are asking them to share what is lifting their spirits, and if the church can be of support to them.
Initial responses to these calls have been very positive. We have heard that people are appreciative of the on-line worship services, the “We are not alone” weekly emails and the many ways that we are staying connected, continuing to build a strong community.
Pandemic promenade: Together but safely apart on the evening stroll during COVID-19
Music to Inspire
The Great Prayer: a vision of hope
The Blessing – Canada
As the world has come together in a time of crisis, the church has united in prayer and worship to bless our communities around the world in the Name of Jesus. With one voice, this is our prayer over Canada.
John Legend & Sam Smith perform “Stand By Me” | One World: Together At Home
The Juilliard School, conducted by Itzhak Perlman on Sunday Matinee
Alone we can do little; Together we can do so much.
The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.
-Coretta Scott King
In this time of COVID-19, we pray:
When we aren’t sure, God,
help us be calm;
when information comes
from all sides, correct and not,
help us to discern;
when fear makes it hard to breathe,
and anxiety seems to be the order of the day,
slow us down, God;
help us to reach out with our hearts,
when we can’t touch with our hands;
help us to be socially connected,
when we have to be socially distant;
help us to love as perfectly as we can,
knowing that “perfect love casts out all fear.”
For the doctors, we pray,
for the nurses, we pray,
for the technicians and the janitors and the
aides and the caregivers, we pray,
for the researchers and theorists,
the epidemiologists and investigators,
for those who are sick,
and those who are grieving, we pray,
for all who are affected,
all around the world…
May we feed the hungry,
give drink to the thirsty,
clothe the naked and house those without homes;
may we walk with those who feel they are alone,
and may we do all that we can to heal
in spite of the epidemic,
in spite of the fear.
Help us, O God,
that we might help each other.
In the love of the Creator,
in the name of the Healer,
in the life of the Holy Spirit that is in all and with all,
May it be so.
—A prayer during times of COVID-19 by the Right Rev. Richard Bott