Pastor Frank's Retirement

August 23, 2021

Members, Friends, and Family of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church:

I hope and pray this finds you healthy and safe during this challenging time of Covid.  It is from a position of concern about remaining safe that I write to you about events Holy Spirit Lutheran Church has planned to celebrate the retirement of Pastor Frank Wagner. 

At a special council meeting on August 17, 2021, HSLC’s council decided that the special 10:00am worship service at the Eissey Theatre on September 19, 2021, will go on as planned.  The capacity of the theater is well over 800 seats; it is our belief that we will be able to maintain good social distancing in that space.  We ask that you keep social distancing in mind as you find your seats that day.  Masks will be required for those in attendance.  For those who are unable to or choose not to attend in-person, a live-stream simulcast of the worship service will be made available for you to view from your computer or mobile device.

The council also decided to cancel the celebration luncheon planned to follow worship at the Marriott ballroom.  Social distancing in that space would have been far more challenging and, due to the nature of being unmasked while eating and sitting close to others at tables, risk of potential virus spread is greatly increased.  The Marriott has agreed to refund our money since this cancellation was due to covid concerns.  In light of this refund by Marriott, the money you spent on ticket purchases will be instead credited to your general fund giving statement.  If you prefer to receive this ticket refund back to you, please contact our business manager, Glen Weeks, to initiate your personal refund.

The council further determined that for Pastor Frank’s last Sunday at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church, September 26, 2021, masks will be required inside our worship space.  Again, since this is a very special Sunday and we expect worship attendance to be significantly higher than it has been, social distancing will be a challenge.  In order to make room for as many people as possible in worship, please adopt the safe practice of mask-wearing for that day in worship.

We are disappointed to curtail our celebration of Pastor Frank and Martina; but Pastor Frank, Martina, and HSLC’s council believe that each other’s safety is the highest priority.  We are still committed to celebrating in a big way while at the Eissey Theatre.  Moments like this one are incredibly important in the life of a congregation.  Being about to convey to Pastor Frank and Martina how much they are loved and how much they will be missed is important to do.  Please join us in that celebration!

Please continue to keep not only our congregation’s leaders in your prayers, but also our community leaders at all levels of government in your prayers.  Navigating the challenges of public health and safety is never easy, and the Holy Spirit’s guidance and wisdom is most welcome in times like these. 

Stay safe and stay faithful,

Pastor Jim