This year’s Lenten Season began much the same as those of past years, with plans for special study groups, retreats, quiet days, and giving to our designated Lenten Appeal for the Anglican Province of America. How quickly and dramatically things changed around the middle of this year’s Lenten Season. With the announcement of the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we were told of the dangers of assembling together for everyday activities. It was determined by authorities that non-essential jobs and activities, such as working in certain businesses and factories, going to restaurants, movie theaters, baseball games, and churches had to be severely restricted. It seemed unbelievable that seemingly innocent and honorable activities could suddenly be declared off-limits or restricted.
The great hope was that by Holy Week and Easter this emergency would be passed and we could see things returning to normal. Sadly, this was and is not the case. The encouraging thing is that for the most part our clergy and parishioners have seen the wisdom in doing our part to control the spread of the virus. We are beginning to see that we are turning the corner and are looking forward to gathering together once again for worship. I wish to extend my heartfelt appreciation to our Clergy who, along with our Altar Guilds, have worked so hard under extreme circumstances to make this Lent and Holy Week special. God bless them.
This will certainly be a Holy Week and Easter we will not soon forget. Each of our parishes and missions has its own tradition in how they celebrate the blessed season of Holy Week and Easter. This year our usual routines are anything but usual. However, on the bright side, one of many wonderful things I have seen this unique year is saying Morning and Evening Prayer via Facebook or YouTube and joining with so many others as they sign on with Father Waterhouse and other clergy in the APA. So many of our Traditional Anglican Churches have reached people beyond their church families, who need the comfort and support of the Liturgical expressions of our BCP 1928. People all over the country have found sanctuary in the electronic world turning to faith-based programs on their cell phones and computers. Many have found our APA churches this way. So, does the Lord reach people beyond our understanding with the Message of great hope found in the Gospel? Perhaps this is God’s way of reaching those we have not been able to reach with the Message of Salvation found in the death, burial, and Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Have a Blessed Easter Day and Eastertide,
The Most Rev. Walter H. Grundorf, D.D.
Presiding Bishop, Anglican Province of America