Weekly Update 3/31

Maundy Thursday 7:00 p.m. Service of Tennebrae and Communion on Zoom.  Have something bread-like and juice-like and a candle ready at home.  Here’s the link:                  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2700683648

Good Friday Service 7:00 p.m. In person at church in the sanctuary. The theme for the service is ‘Into the Darkness.’ This contemplative service will be a moving spiritual exploration of the crucifixion.  For those who are interested, the labyrinth will available after the service. It will be lit with lanterns.

Easter SundayOut of the Tomb

There will be two glorious services on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.  The services will be the same in content.  Music director, Hilton Jones, may be present to play in person.  Communion will be available in individual self serve packages.  From 10:30-11:00, congregants are invited to enjoy fellowship together outside on the lawn.  So come early or stay after the service to enjoy seeing your LUCC friends while staying covid safe.

The 9:30 a.m. service will be streamed on Facebook Live

Because of covid, there will not be an Easter Egg hunt or some of the ‘usual’ Easter festivities, but there will be a glorious celebration of new life and hope inspired by the stories of the resurrection of Jesus.

The Branch

Several people have asked what happened to the branch that was suspended from the sanctuary ceiling.  With the windows and doors open and the breeze circulating, the old, dry branch could possibly fall on someone during the service.  So it was removed because it was determined to be a hazard.  Stay posted.  Something will replace it!

Covid Conversations

The church has been having covid safe worship in these cooler months with the windows and doors open.   In the heat of the months to come, a new plan may be needed.  Worship at an earlier time when it is cooler?  Have services outside on the covered patio in the shade?  Have virtual services only on FaceBook or Zoom?   Make other arrangements or adaptations?   Church leaders would like to hear the ideas and thoughts of the congregation.  

There will be two options for you to be part of this discussion. One in person and one virtual. The in person conversation will be following the service on Sunday April 11. The service will end early to provide time for this discussion.

The virtual gathering will be Tuesday April 6 at 7:00 p.m. on Zoom. Here’s the link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2700683648

People who have NOT been coming to church are particularly encouraged to contribute to this conversation.  Church leaders would like to be sensitive to the needs and desires of the whole congregation.  Thank you for helping with this!


You are invited to be part of in-person, covid safe worship on Sunday mornings.

Childcare provided.

The bulletin and text of the Sunday sermon will be posted at the website the following week and there will be regular posts of music and music videos from Hilton Jones.

Watch the service on FaceBook Live Sundays at 10:30. Easter Sunday at 9:30  https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

For covid safety measurse, see below

Being Covid Safe and In Person Worship

The church has contacted the St. Petersburg Health Department for guidance.  Here are the take aways that are being implemented for everyone’s safety.

Please stay home if you are not feeling well.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending double masking.  Please consider wearing two masks to church.  Additional masks will be available at church to use as needed.

Two hand sanitizing stations will be available for use by worshippers.

Signs will be posted to encourage physical distancing.

The pulpit and altar will be moved into the chancel to provide more room for the congregation to physical distance.

Prayer request sheets will be provided so that worshippers may write their prayer requests and place them in a basket on the altar.  This eliminates the need for the worship leader to come within 6 feet of the worshippers. 

People who would like to converse after the service are encouraged to do so outside, not in the hallway or the library or other confined spaces.

The breezeway restrooms will be open and available to prevent people from congregating in the library while waiting to use the office restroom.

The chairs in the sanctuary will be cleaned with sanitizer each week.  You are welcome to bring your own chair if you prefer.

There is well-ventilated, physically distanced indoor seating as well as outdoor seating on the sidewalk adjacent to the sanctuary. Masks are worn by all. Please know that your safety is of primary consideration!Childcare provided.

Facebook Live Help Needed

The broadcast of the service is very meaningful to the people from the church family that watch.  It is a significant ministry to those who cannot be present in the church building.  

Currently there are three people from the congregation who have volunteered to do the streaming on Sunday mornings. It is not very complicated. You can use a smartphone or a tablet. There is a brief training and written instructions are provided. A few more people are needed to help so that this ministry can be continued. Are you willing to consider this? Please speak with Rev. Wells or with Barbara Donohue. Many thanks!

Adult Day Care Plans Opening

The adult day care continues to move forward.  The opening date has been postponed due to inspections.  Hopefully the center will be open by the end of April.  Many thanks to those from the church who are helping with this transition:  Claire Stiles, Patti Cooksey, Colleen Coughenour, and Earl Waters. Thank you!

Immigration Justice Update:

Find out about Immigration Justice and more at:  https://www.facebook.com/PinellasCoalition

Want an easy way to support local migrant farmworkers? Buy “Fair Food” labeled tomatoes and other produce at Trader Joe’s, Fresh Market, Whole Foods and even Walmart. Note: Publix is not participating in this effort. 

Thank you to Michelle Cloutier for attending this meeting and providing the new update!

Operation Attack Needs

We had another successful Food Distribution Drive Thru on January 30.  We served 53 Families and 180 people.  We have another event on  April 17th. 

We want to encourage you to participate in the Drive-Thrus in the following ways: 

  • Volunteer at the preparation opportunities and/or the Drive Thru.
  • Donate cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese.
  • Pray for the people in our community who are being challenged during this difficult time and the volunteers who are trying to ease their burdens.

Anti-Racism Demonstrations Continue

Weekly demonstrations take place on Sunday evenings from 6-6:30p.m. Many thanks to all who are participating.  Add your presence to this weekly demonstration making a witness to your commitment to anti racism.

Weekly Labyrinth Walks Continue

Each Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. a small group gathers at the outdoor labyrinth for a time of devotion, discussion, and meditative walking of the labyrinth.  The theme for the week is taken from the Sunday before, so it is an opportunity to go deeper in the spiritual exploration of that theme for your life.  This devotional gathering is outside and physical distancing is maintained. All are welcome!

If there is rain on Wednesday morning, the gathering will be held on Thursday morning at 9:00.

Spiritual Direction Offered by LUCC Clergy Member.

In these troubled times, it is important to find ways to tend to our spiritual lives. In the Christian tradition, Spiritual Direction is one of the ways of paying attention to the spirit in our lives. A Spiritual Director is someone to talk with about what is going on in our spiritual life and in our relationship with God however we may conceive of God.

Rev. Sally Purvis, Ph.D., a member of LUCC, is a retired clergy person with training and experience in Spiritual Direction. She is offering her services as a Spiritual Director to the community. The sessions would be held on Zoom and there is no fee to be paid. Church leaders are pleased to have the ministry of the church expand in this way.

Spiritual Direction with Sally is open to anyone, not just the congregation. And it is offered to everyone whatever their spiritual or religious background or affiliation or lack thereof. Sessions are generally held once every three weeks. Spiritual Direction is not a mode of therapy. It is a process for understanding and deepening your relationship with God/Spirit in ways that are authentic and life-giving.

Sally was trained by Henri Nouwen, a noted spiritual guide of the 20th century, and did Spiritual Direction as part of her professional ministry before retiring in 2015.

If you would like to explore Spiritual Direction with Sally, please contact her at
sallybpurvis@icloud.com or contact the church (867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com ).

The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.

Music from Hilton

You can watch 5 videos Hilton made as lead-ups to Martin Luther King, Jr. Day at https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUn2RmCFhW2uAVwKQLfqJnzNmZhEK_TK5.

If you want to just hear they soundtracks, without the videos, you can hear those at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/mlk-day.


For the above church website links, please note the “Older Posts” button near the bottom of each page.

March Birthdays: Carol Shores 3/1, Claudia Rodriguez 3/3, Yvonne Riesen 3/13, Ron Huff 3/19, Earl Waters 3/25, Marg Radens 3/31, Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.

Circle of Concern: 

The family and loved ones of Dick Schubert, cousin of Evelyn Kaspar, who died recently.

Marsha Carson

Marg and Dave Radens

Dina Gamma

Carol Shores and her son Joel.

Edward Jones

William Owen

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

Teachers, students, and school personnel, and all healthcare workers and essential workers. All those suffering from COVID-19.

Please keep LUCC member, Olivia Gibson, in your prayers. She is a nurse in a COVID-19 unit in a local hospital. We are grateful for her ministry!

Church Office Hours:  Tuesday-Friday 9:30-noon. 

Recent Posts:

Weekly Update: If you are involved with an activity or event that you would like to share with the LUCC family, please send the information to the Church Office by Tuesday since the Update usually is sent out on Wednesday.

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