NEWS BLOG

Covid Protocols – Navigating the Back & Forth

COVID Protocols – Navigating the Back & Forth

COVID rates remain elevated but still near the border between the Low and Medium level metrics according to the CDC and Austin Public Health. We have gone back and forth between levels often in the past month. If current trends continue, we may settle into the medium phase for awhile. This week, we are at Medium.

The Regathering Task Force has looked at the current situation and future contingencies and is currently be recommending that in the Low level of risk masks will be optional and fellowship with food and beverages may continue indoors. Whenever we reach Medium, we will be asking those at public gatherings like worship or any gathering with more than 25 people present to wear masks. At Medium, any food or drink fellowship will be outdoors, weather permitting. At both these levels, small groups may discern together when masking as a group might be the right choice for them.

Given the nature of the new Low/Medium/High staging system…it seems possible that we may switch back and forth often from week to week. We will try to keep the email and website up to date with our current level. For your planning, though, you may presume at Low that masks will be optional and coffee may be served…and at Medium, we will all wear masks.

Thank you for your continued commitment to care for yourselves and one another and our wider community.

 


Crawfish Boil June 5

Come celebrate Pentecost and Confirmation and New Members Sunday, June 5 at the Peace Crawfish Boil! We’ll have a boil of crawfish, shrimp, sausage, corn, potatoes, onion and mushrooms served with baguette bread. There will also be hotdogs, chips, and macaroni and cheese, as well as tea and lemonade to drink. Tickets are $10 adult, $25 Family Maximum, $2 for children or non-crawfish eaters. Tickets can be purchased in person after service on May 15, May 22, and May 29.  For online purchase sign up here.


Ripples of Covid

The COVID-19 pandemic and its effects upended our lives, are still upending our lives, and will continue to affect us long into the future. Whether it was health issues, stress related to staying healthy, physical distancing, meetings on Zoom, new ways to teach and learn, loss of loved ones, changes in jobs, the struggles to return to what seems normal…. Well, you get the point—the pandemic was, is, and is to be stressful. Stephen Ministers are able to listen and walk with you as you navigate the ongoing effects of the pandemic in whatever form it is.
 
If you feel the need for this kind of care or know someone who does and would like to learn more about Stephen Ministry, please email stephenministry@peaceaustin.org with your contact information or call the church office and a Stephen Leader will contact you.

During this period of social distancing, we can provide care by telephone, video conferencing, or other methods needed to maintain social distance. We can also arrange to meet in person safely.


Summer Food Drive

Hill County Community Ministry ( HCCM ) Summer food drive.

Summer is rapidly approaching and the needs at HCCM continue.  The focus for May, June, and July will be jelly, tooth brushes and tooth paste. Why pick these items?  Jelly is always needed!  During the summer more children are at home and a simple self sufficient meal / snack is peanut butter and jelly.  Tooth brushes and tooth paste are low inventory at HCCM, too. I always feel 100% prepared for the day after I brush my teeth.  Please consider bringing these items with you and add them to the basket located in the narthex. You can also give online and choose HCCM from the dropdown menu. Thanks in advance for helping our neighbors in need.


Discipleship Sessions

Starting May 1!
 
Whether you are new to Peace, plugging back in, or just eager to connect with a wider group in our faith family – these Sunday sessions are for you!

At Peace we make it a point each year to invite new folks to connect. We don’t call it a new member class…because it isn’t about the learning…not really…and there certainly isn’t any test. It’s about slowing down, deepening in faith as we listen to ourselves and to one another and to God.

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Book Club

Peace’s book club, Peace’s Perpetual Page-Turners, always welcomes new members. If you are interested in joining, email mwhiteeagle@msn.com. Currently we have 15 members and are still meeting via zoom. We read only fiction, socialize extensively, and promise not to berate if you don’t have time to read the book that month. Our meeting date is the 2nd Thursday of each month at 1:30. Starting in July we intend to have an in-person meeting on the 2nd Thursday and a zoom meeting on the 3rd Thursday of the month, giving people the option of online or in-person meeting. Our group includes both current church attendees as well as former ones who live out of state.


Masking Optional

COVID Protocols – Masking Options Still In Effect

COVID transmission rates have risen, but our local health systems are still functioning well. We are continuing to monitor the situation carefully, and may return to masking for larger public events if local health authorities advise it.
For now, our policies continue to permit individuals to choose whether to wear a mask or not at church events, including larger, public gatherings like Sunday worship.
 
As ever, we continue to urge each individual to follow the protocols that are recommended for you based on risk…and we ask anyone who will be on campus to prescreen for symptoms and stay home if you feel sick.


CROP Walk 2022

 
The day of the CROP walk event may have passed, but there’s still time to donate!
 
Join us for the 2022 Leander/Cedar Park CROP Hunger Walk! We’ll gather at the Twin Lakes Family YMCA at 1:30pm on April 24 and step-off at 2pm using the beautiful Brushy Creek Regional Trail! The steps you take and funds you raise will end hunger for neighbors around the block (through Hill Country Community Ministries) and around the world (through Church World Service). Can’t make it the day of the walk or still unsure about a group setting? Sign-up and walk (or not) in the way that best suits, or donate to one of our walkers or the team.


Mask with smile

Progress Continues!

Mask with smile
COVID Protocols – Progress Continues!

We remain grateful that the Austin area is in lower stages of its COVID protocol system, and that the CDC has released new guidance for individuals based on weekly county-level data. In light of this public health guidance and the commitments we have held throughout the pandemic, we are in ongoing discussion of our community’s protocols. If you have strong feelings about the pace of restrictions loosening (or not) you may always be in touch with us. We are balancing many different variables in this discernment.

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Feeling Down?

Our Stephen Ministry can help. Stephen Ministers aren’t just there for “big” crises. They’re also available for the little ones because many times the little things can really add up. So don’t wait until you have a really big crisis; consider Stephen Ministry if the little things have you feeling down.
 
If you feel the need for this kind of care or know someone who does and would like to learn more about Stephen Ministry, please email stephenministry@peaceaustin.org with your contact information or call the church office and a Stephen Leader will contact you.

During this period of social distancing, we can provide care by telephone, video conferencing, or other methods needed to maintain social distance.


Lent 2022

Lent 2022: Cultivating & Letting Go

Lent begins with Ash Wednesday worship at 7:00 pm on March 2 and we will be offering both in-person and online ways to connect to worship by that time.
 
This Lenten season, we will reflect on the theme of Cultivating & Letting Go. On Wednesday evenings we will worship with Holden Evening Prayer, and reflect on the weekly scriptures through conversation, journaling, and contemplative coloring.

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In-person worship resumes

In-Person Worship Resumes February 27

We give thanks for the official announcement of Stage 4 precautions from Austin Public Health. In light of this encouraging transition, the Regathering Task Force is recommending that in-person worship resume again this Sunday, February 27. As always, if you will feel safer connecting online, you may continue to do so…and you are no less a part of the community…no matter which way you join!

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Closer to Stage 4

Hospitalizations in our community continue to decline, and we finally dipped down into the Stage 4 numbers at the end of this week after briefly stalling out still in Stage 5. Because the downward trend was slowed, we have not yet reached an official transtion to Stage 4. We will remain online only for Sunday, February 20, and continue to look to the Stage 4 designation of Austin Public Health as our signal that in person gathering is advisable. Again…hopefully next week for Transfiguration Sunday.

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Lent Sacred Time

Lenten Sacred Time Invitation from the Bishop’s Office
An Invitation from Bishop Sue
Immerse yourself in the gift of Sacred Time during Lent

This Lenten season, we offer the gift of Sacred Time to all people in the Southwestern Texas Synod. We invite you to set aside an hour once a week to gather with fellow disciples for guided prayer, dwelling in ancient stories from scripture, and sharing your own stories of faith. The theme is: For the love of God our hearts confess… loneliness, fear, thirst, rebellion, joy.

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Covid Update

COVID Protocols – Looking Towards Stage 4
Hospitalizations in our community continue to decline, and we anticipate a return to in person worship very soon. We will remain online only this Sunday, and hope to have an announcement by next Sunday that the invitation to worship on campus will be open again to those who wish to. Please keep an eye on the weekly email, facebook page, and homepage of the church website for updates.

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Stage 5 Update

This past week hospitalizations in our community have continued to surge, and have now exceeded the highest previous hospitalization rates for the entire pandemic. To do our part (vaccinated or not) to break the chains of transmission, the Peace Regathering Task Force is asking that only the worship leaders come to the church campus for worship during stage 5, and that others connect to the live stream online.

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A Day for Dreaming

A Day for Dreaming – POSTPONED
In light of the current spike in covid cases, we are postponing our Day for dreaming event from this Saturday to early February (hopefully February 5). We hope this will allow more people to participate safely and fully…

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MLK Day 2022

MLK Day of Service – Jan 17
It is difficult to find activities where we can serve as a group at this time, however there are still ways we can serve. Below are a few examples of how this can be done. There is something for all ages and abilities. Of course there are many more than what is on this list. We would like for you to take a picture of yourself serving and post to Friends of Peace on Facebook or send it to comm@peaceaustin.org.

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Covid Prototols

COVID Protocol Update
 
As we face a new surge in COVID cases and hospitalizations, we are returning to higher precaution levels at Peace. We are hopeful this surge will be briefer than past ones so we can return to our more recent levels of precaution soon.

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Epiphany

Epiphany – A Special Celebration
This Sunday, January 2, we invite you into a very special service of Lessons and Carols…where we will hear the Epiphany story in a new way…from a lesser known of the magi…Sage the Mage…and her camel friend Snoots. We will join them on their adventure to find the new king…guided by the Star. It’s a story for young and old…for in person and online…for everyone everywhere!


Christmas Worship

Make plans to join us in worship this Christmas
 

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Keeping a Holy Advent

As we enter this holy season of expectation and preparation…busy-ness can fill up our minds and hearts. We hope you can enter into the expansiveness of Advent’s hopeful expectation, even in midst of all that fills our days this time of year.

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A Future with Hope

The history of the people of God contains numerous examples of shared hardship and ordeal.

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Giving Tree 2021

Please prayerfully consider taking a card from the Giving Tree or donating through Amazon Smiles to help bring a smile to a face this Christmas.

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Meals on Wheels

For more information on volunteering with Peace’s MOW team and to get information on getting on Peace’s Wednesday delivery schedule, please contact Barbara Kimball.

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