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Pastor’s Update:

FPC Responds to COVID-19 

 
Be not afraid, my sisters and brothers. Fear, not the coronavirus, is our enemy. The Lord reigns! Let us rejoice, give thanks and live for him.  Pastor Stuart Spencer
 
 
 
 
 

COVID-19 MESSAGE FOR YOU

We have a general rule at FPC Moorestown to share with you to guide our actions as we interact with each other during worship service, Sunday school or on campus meetings — any symptom during a pandemic that is part of the litany of symptoms is COVID-19 until proven otherwise. What this means is that we have to be responsible for ourselves. If you aren’t feeling well, feel out of it, have the sniffles; be cautious. What used to be “just a common deal with it” situation is now required to be taken seriously as it could literally mean life or death for us, our family or friends. If you have any doubt, STAY HOME. 
 
Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others. 1 Corinthians 10:24
 

We have updated guidelines for you:

  • Effective Sunday, June 27, masks are optional. Some people may decide to wear a mask for a number of reasons.
  • Starting Sunday, July 4th, our Independence Day, congregational singing will be permitted at both services. Singers at both services won’t have to wear masks as they offer their praise to God.
  • The collection practice continues with emphasis on electronic giving and mailing checks to church. The offering box will be available at both services.
  • All entry remains through the Commons Lobby.
  • Check-ins will be for attendance purposes only and will shift to self-check only (no QR code). We won’t be asking people to complete release forms, health forms or have temperatures taken, effective immediately.
  • Handicapped entry remains through the narthex.
  • Restrictions on seating capacity are fully lifted.
  • We’ll continue using individual communion serving units when we celebrate the Lord’s Supper.
  • If you’re not feeling well or have any COVID symptoms, please stay at home.
  • These same protocols are in effect for all FPC Moorestown groups, though groups won’t have to check in before meeting. Please consult the Church Office when planning an event or a meeting.
  • For the present, no food will be served inside our facilities. We won’t offer a Sunday Coffee Hour for the time being, though we hope to in the coming months.
  • Both Sunday morning services will be available by live stream.
 

An Update Message from Pastor Spencer

 
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 20
 
June 25, 2021

OLLIE, OLLIE IN COME FREE!

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
 
Right at this point in June, in the longest days of the year and summer nearly arrived; I fondly remember playing outside as a child with the kids of my neighborhood. My favorite game was Kick the Can, the reverse of Hide and Go Seek. One kid guarded an old tin coffee can while the rest of us hid by the houses, trees and shrubs of our neighborhood. The goal was to kick the can — though if the guard tagged you, you had to sit in jail until someone successfully booted the can. If the game went too long or the hour was too late, the person guarding the can shouted: Ollie! Ollie in come free! According to Wikipedia, the phrase my friends and I yelled is a variant of “Olly olly oxen free.” The term is a truce term used in children’s games such as hide and seek, capture the flag, and kick the can. Hearing it indicates that players who are hiding can come out into the open without losing the game; or, that the game is entirely over.
 
I’m calling: Ollie, Ollie in come free today. Though the COVID pandemic isn’t completely over, we see the right signs moving in both directions. Infection rates in Burlington County are dropping while the vaccine rates are rising. At FPC Moorestown, this means that we’re loosening more of our restrictions and easing into a number of changes. I invite, welcome and encourage you to join us Sunday for worship at 8:30 a.m. in the Sanctuary and 11:00 a.m. in Miller Commons. The coast is clear. Come on in!
 
At its stated meeting Tuesday, June 22, Session approved the following guidelines for our worship services and meeting (see our event page for details).
  • Effective Sunday, June 27, masks will be optional. Some people may decide to wear a mask for a number of reasons. As disciples, we honor and love one another without judgment. NOTE: These mask guidelines will not apply to participants of our Vacation Bible School. Children will need to mask next week because of mandates for day camps in the State of New Jersey.
  • Starting Sunday, July 4th, our Independence Day, congregational singing will be permitted at both services. We’ll start slowly, meaning that the congregation will sing a couple of times in each worship service. Beginning this Sunday, singers at both services won’t have to wear masks as they offer their praise to God.
  • The collection practice continues with emphasis on electronic giving and mailing checks to church. The offering box will be available at both services.
  • All entry remains through the Commons Lobby.
  • Check-ins will be for attendance purposes only and will shift to self-check only (no QR code). We won’t be asking people to complete release forms, health forms or have temperatures taken, effective immediately.
  • Please continue to check in on the Church Center app on your smart phone when arriving or when viewing the live stream from home.
  • Handicapped entry remains through the narthex.
  • Restrictions on seating capacity are fully lifted.
  • We’ll continue using individual communion serving units when we celebrate the Lord’s Supper.
  • If you’re not feeling well or have any COVID symptoms, please stay at home.
  • These same protocols are in effect for all FPC Moorestown groups, though groups won’t have to check in before meeting. Please consult the Church Office when planning an event or a meeting.
  • For the present, no food will be served inside our facilities. We won’t offer a Sunday Coffee Hour for the time being, though we hope to in the coming months.
  • Both Sunday morning services will be available by live stream.
I have more pleasant news to share with you. At Tuesday’s Session meeting, our elders approved the recommendation of our Personnel Team to hire Steve Margerum as our new Property Supervisor and Steve Purdy as a full-time member of our Property Team. Identifying the members of our Property Team is now simple but confusing. Just call Steve!
 
I like to conclude all of our Congregational Updates with a request for your prayers. Please hold Holly Asciutto and her staff in prayer in the final days before Vacation Bible School and each morning next week. Remember regularly our search committees for an Associate Pastor and Youth Director.
Please continue to support the mission and work of our church financially. Our staff and lay leaders are eager to serve our community and congregation as the pandemic recedes.
 
Ollie! Ollie in come free! See you in worship!
 
Fondly yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 
 

Pastor Spencer has shared uplifting and heartfelt messages with us over the term of this pandemic.

 
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 19

REALISTIC HOPE!

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
There’s reason for realistic hope that our nation is emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic. The CDC and the State of New Jersey are loosening requirements for public gatherings. The rate of those who have received a vaccine is increasing while the rate of infection is declining. Signs requiring masks in stores are quickly vanishing. Families and friends gather now more easily and with less worry.
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 18

PENTECOST SUNDAY

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
This coming Sunday is Pentecost Sunday. For close to 2,000 years, the day of Pentecost stands as one of the most significant days of the year. It marks the historic outpouring of the promised Spirit of God upon God’s people. That miracle still happens today. I hope you’ll worship with us on Sunday, either in person or via live stream.
 
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 17

WE HAVE EXCITING NEWS TO SHARE

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
I borrow and paraphrase a line from A. A. Milne, author of Winnie the Pooh, “How lucky I am to have [someone] that makes saying goodbye so hard.” How lucky, how fortunate, how blessed I am and we are to have someone like Kelly LePenske. She makes saying goodbye so hard. Stuart Spencer, Pastor  
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 16

One Year Later – We’ve Come a Long Way

March 12, 2021
Dear Member and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
The world changed almost a year ago exactly. Do you remember where you were? I recall how quickly everything shut down in the middle of March of 2020. Since then, we’ve all had to adjust to new ways of working, going to school, shopping, and attending worship.   
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 14
Christmas Eve schedule offers meaningful, safe worship opportunities
December 18, 2020
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
Planning for Christmas Eve in the middle of a pandemic, like nearly everything else we’ve faced this year, isn’t easy. Consider that Christmas Eve is the night when everyone goes to church. Not this year. Most churches are planning for pre-recorded or live stream services with no in-person participants.
 
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 12
It will be a wonderfully powerful moment when we’re gathered together. Safely.
October 30, 2020
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
Someone at some time taught you how to go to church. Most likely, your parents were the ones who showed you the ropes READ MORE…
 
Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 11
Session Approves Indoor Worship to Begin November 1; Limited Indoor Gatherings
October 16, 2020  
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,

“When they said, ‘Let’s go to the house of God,’ my heart leaped for joy. And now we’re here …” (Psalm 122: 1)

As of last Sunday, it’s been 34 weeks since we’ve gathered indoors for worship. That’s well over a half a year. For some of us, it’s felt like forever.   READ MORE…

 

Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 10
Joan Van Camp Porch
October 4, 2020
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
I’m delighted to share with you the opening of the Joan Van Camp Porch. Joan, a long time faithful member of our church, left a generous gift to the church last year.
Pastor Update
Fall Kickoff and Ministry Fair
September 11, 2020
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
Once a group of maintenance workers at a state park had grown upset with the park management. Management was dissatisfied with how the workers were cleaning the camp sites after campers left for home.
Pastor Update
Session Approves Recommendation for Outdoor Worship Gathering
July 31, 2020

 

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,

For months, I’ve carried a vision in my mind of a time when we can return to our sanctuary and Miller Commons to worship God together.  READ MORE…

Pastor Update

“We’ll leave the light on for you … “
July 3, 2020

Dear Members or Friends of FPC Moorestown,
You may remember the old ad from Motel 6: We’ll leave the light on for you. A light left on is a silent sign of welcome and care — at a hotel, home, or a church. A light on means that you’re in someone’s mind and heart. READ MORE…
Pastor Update
May 29, 2020
 
Dear Beloved Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
It feels like forever since I last saw you in person. I carry you in my heart and I lift you before the Lord in prayer.   READ MORE…
Pastor Update
May 8, 2020
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
“Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us—I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving.” (2 Corinthians 8: 7)   READ MORE…
Pastor Update
Friday, April 24, 2020
“And now the word of the Lord is ringing out …”
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown:
A blessed and joyous Easter to you! If you’ve forgotten that we’re still in the season of Easter, then allow me to remind you. In reflecting on this season, author Joan Chittister writes,
Pastor Update
Thursday, April 2, 2020
 
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,  As we prepare for a Holy Week unlike any other we’ve experienced, I want to share a wonderful observation from The Rev. Dr. Emily C. Heath. She noted, “The first Easter didn’t happen at a church. It happened outside an empty tomb, while all the disciples were sequestered at home, grief-stricken and wondering what was going on. So, we’re going to be keeping things pretty Biblical this Easter.”  READ MORE…
Pastor Update
Wednesday, April 1, 2020
91 x 91: Praying Psalm 91 for 91 days
 
As one of our partners, and in light of the COVID-19 pandemic that is hitting all of us, and may wreak havoc in the urban poor communities where we serve[1], we would love to invite you and those in the Moorestown Presbyterian Church Community that you think would be interested, to join us in a prayer campaign that we´ve named “91×91”.  READ MORE…
Pastor Update
Wednesday, March 18, 2020
 
Friends,
As so many of the letters written to the early church begin, “Grace and peace to you from the Lord Jesus Christ!” Now that life has shifted so suddenly and with such uncertainty, we’re seeking the Lord as we haven’t sought him before. I’m grateful for the opportunity to trust God more deeply, serve God more energetically and live for God with greater love and joy.  READ MORE..
Pastor Update
Friday, March 13, 2020
 

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As you know, the coronavirus (COVID-19) is a highly contagious flu-like virus that is spreading rapidly throughout the world and the United States. While the risk of becoming seriously ill or dying from the virus is very low, for some people — especially the elderly and those who are already fragile — it is potentially deadly. READ MORE…

Messages from members of the FPC Moorestown Staff.

 

Resources

 

NJ Residents can register directly for the COVID Vaccine at the following sites:

 
Moorestown Mall Mega Site:
VIRTUA.ORG/VACCINE
 
Camden County College Site:  CAMDENCOUNTY.COM/VACCINEREGISTRATION
(this site has mobile phone option but you must download the app My Chart)
 
Shop Rite – Medford
VACCINES.SHOPRITE.COM
 
Rowan University Site:
ROWANMEDICINE.COM/VACCINE
 
To call by phone:
NJ Hotline – 855.568.0545 (available 8 am – 8 pm)
 
 

Helpful hints:

  • Have your insurance card ready when you get a time slot
  • Have your social security number ready
  • You only have 10 minutes to input the information or you have to begin again.
 

Should individuals need assistance registering, they can contact:

Chris Catanella
cell 941.773.3001
christine.catanella@gmail.com
 
Ginny Weber
Home: 856.235.5652 or cell 856.266.2778
swimlaxbal@aol.com
 
Giving in this Era of COVID-19
Although we won’t be together for a time due to the highly contagious COVID-19, please continue to support FPC Moorestown financially. Like many others, we still have ongoing expenses and mission commitments, and deeply desire to support families who are stretched especially thin right now.