Dear Friends in Christ,
Greetings in this Holy Season of Lent. Please know of my prayers for you all and especially at this time which has seen the emergence of the Coronavirus COVID-19. Many are wondering what the emergence of this virus means for our common life. At the bottom of this letter you will find resources from the Diocese of Olympia and the Diocese of Fond du Lac. I encourage you to review them as individuals and as congregations.
I ask you to do the following.
PRAY – for all those affected, for health care workers and clinicians, and for those working to eradicate this virus.
KEEP CALM – Unnecessary panic is never helpful any situation.
WASH YOUR HANDS – properly, for at least 20 seconds (the time it takes one to say the Lord’s Prayer) with soap and hot water.
REMEMBER - Receiving the Eucharist in one kind (either the bread or the wine) is a full communion with Christ. It is not necessary to receive communion in both kinds. Follow any amended communion practices in your parish with charity.
It is not necessary to exchange the peace physically by hugging and shaking hands; a bow or flashing the peace sign is acceptable. Remember until this Book of Common Prayer, the Peace was simply a verbal exchange. One way to help strengthen this change might be to move the peace to right after the Lord’s Prayer as authorized in the liturgy. Also, remember that you do not have to greet everyone in the church.
STAY HOME- If you are sick or have been exposed.
May God bless you in this holy season.
The Rt. Rev. Steven Andrew Miller
Bishop of Milwaukee