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Third & Adams Street, PO Box 9774, Moscow, Idaho USA | (208) 882-3715

Pastor Debbie's E-Spire - March 15, 2021

This week marks one year. March 8th was our last normal worship service. The one where common reporting said SARS-COVID-19 was much like the flu and we were advised to cover our cough, stay home if we felt ill, and wash our hands.

We acknowledged that we care about each other and we didn’t want to make anyone sick—we agreed to use common sense.

We smiled, we hugged, we shook hands (though some had started refraining), and we had coffee fellowship.

Then everything changed.

More science became available. More people were hospitalized. And it felt like the whole world shifted. Schools closed. Lockdowns started. Playgrounds were cordoned off. And on March 13th our annual conference told all of our UMCs in our area that we had to close, effective immediately.

Our amazing team pivoted immediately. The choir had already rehearsed and spring break hadn’t yet started, so we felt safe having the choir sing that first Sunday. I watched a 20-minute video on videography for worship. Terry and Tony came in to set up and run sound—sharing their time, talents, and personal equipment. Andy prepared the choir. The choir faithfully came on Sunday morning to rehearse. Before the service, we talked through tripod and camera movements and who would do what parts. We prayed for this very new and pretty weird thing and we offered our first Facebook live service.

And then things changed all over Moscow. We were on Spring break and soon notices came that the schools would close for 2 weeks after. Then the shelter in place order came from the governor. Restaurants and coffee shops closed. Stores closed. Grocery stores went to modified schedules. Nursing homes refused visitors. Most people stocked up—on any number of things. Travel plans were canceled. And we all hunkered down for what we imagined would be a short period of time.

I won’t chronicle it all—but I do want to acknowledge these anniversaries. They’re important. And often, they hold emotions we might not even realize. Much like after the death of a loved one we find ourselves extra emotional or inexplicably tired on birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, and other significant days, our grief over this pandemic year may be triggered by the significant anniversary days.

Which is the long way of saying—be gentle with yourself and with others in the coming weeks. If you find yourself more reactive, or extra tired, take time to reflect on what this month meant to you last year and the grief of the pandemic. Take time to pray for God’s healing.

And, like me, maybe take time to write it down. Remember what happened, how you felt, and what shifted.

And, know this, we’re on our way through this. We’ve already survived 100+ obstacles we never saw coming and we’ll make it through even more.

For now, may you feel the fullness of your emotions, and may it bring healing and peace.



In Christ,
Pastor Debbie


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Sunday morning parking at the church is available in the high school parking lot on Third Street across from the church and in the city lots west of the church. These lots are available only on Sunday mornings. A small lot for handicapped parking is available just off of Adams Street on the north side of the church, with an accessible entrance directly into the sanctuary. A lift operates between the Fellowship Hall (3rd Street level) and the Sanctuary. William Sound System Receivers and Headsets are available to assist with hearing problems.

322 East Third Street
Moscow, ID 83843


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The First United Methodist Church of Moscow, Idaho takes as our mission to be the body of Jesus Christ, ministering to a community which draws strength from its diversity. Our mission centers on the worship of God, expressed through varied forms of prayer, preaching, music, and ritual.  See more...

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